Workers’ group to push for wage increase if prices of prime commodities soar

UNTV News   •   December 26, 2017   •   4205

MANILA, Philippines – The Associated Labor Unions-Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (ALU-TUCP) is anticipating the impact of the Tax Reform Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) law on the public.

Spokesperson Alan Tanjusay said they are likely to ask for another increase in minimum wage if prices of services and basic goods such as gasoline and electricity will go up.

Meanwhile, the Employer’s Confederation of the Philippines may also charge additional expenses for their products.

Minimum wage in Metro Manila has increased by P21.00 last October.  Based on the law, a new wage increase can only be filed only after a year.

But ALU-TUCP pointed out that such is not applicable during an extraordinary event.

“Kapagka merong supervening event, may mga extra ordinary na situwasyon, maaari po tayong magfile ng wage increase petition para madagdagan yung sahod ng mga manggagawa lalong lalo na yung mga minimum wage earners,” Tanjusay said.

(If there is a supervening event or an extraordinary situation, we may file a wage increase petition to augment the salary of workers especially minimum-wage earners.)

Meanwhile, the government will give P200 monthly to 10 million households in the country to minimize the impact of the new tax law.

This means that the government will spend P2-billion a month and a total of P24-billion a year.

“Now, of course, to cushion the impact of indirect taxes, there is cash transfer provided in the law itself. Ten million households will receive cash transfers of P200 per month in 2018 and p300 per month in 2019 and 2020,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said.

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) is the agency tasked to implement unconditional cash transfer aside from the conditional cash transfer that it has been implementing.

“4.4 million lang naman kasi yung sa pantawid na households. Yung iba doon kukunin sa listahanan at kukunin doon sa listahan ng mga social persioners. Merong 2.8 [million] ngayon yung mga social pensioners,” DSWD Undersecretary Malou Turalde said.

(There are only 4.4 million ‘pantawid’ households (cash transfer beneficiaries).  Some of them will be selected from the list of social pensioners. There are currently 2.8 million social pensioners.)

However, the workers’ group remain opposed to the matter.

“Ang ganitong klase ng tulong kaisa doon sa ‘dole out’ kung saan tuturuan natin yung ating mga kababayang Pilipino na maging tamad at maging idle at maging dependent sa gobyerno (This kind of aid is similar to a “dole-out” wherein we teach our Filipino countrymen to be lazy and idle and dependent on government),” Tanjusay said. – Rey Pelayo | UNTV News & Rescue

 

4Ps beneficiaries na fully vaccinated na vs COVID-19, bibigyan ng insentibo — DSWD

Robie de Guzman   •   December 1, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Makatatanggap ng dagdag na insentibo ang mga benepisyaryo ng Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) na nakakumpleto na ng bakuna kontra COVID-19.

Ayon kay Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Rolando Bautista, nakatakdang maglabas ng executive order si Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte kaugnay ng programa.

“The president will issue an executive order on how to grant incentives to the members of 4Ps once they submit themselves for vaccination without violating the regulations governing the program,” ang pahayag ni Bautista nang bumisita ito sa isang vaccination center sa Zamboanga City noong Martes.

Hindi binanggit ng opisyal kung anong insentibo ang ibibigay sa 4Ps beneficiaries.

Ayon sa DSWD chief, mas marami na ngayong 4Ps beneficiaries ang interesado nang magpabakuna matapos magsagawa ng information drive ang pamahalaan kaugnay ng hakbang.

“We explained to them that they really need to be vaccinated against coronavirus disease during the conduct of the family development sessions,” ani Bautista.

Employers urge IATF to place NCR under alert level 2

Maris Federez   •   November 2, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Several business owners are calling on the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) to place the National Capital Region under alert level 2.

This is after the nation’s capital registered around 3,000 new coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases on Monday.

The group perceived this as a start of the declining number of new cases as a result of the government’s vaccination rollout.

“Dapat binaba na yan noon pang September after August (noong) binago ang sistema. Wala na akong nakikitang rason kung bakit ang dami pang hindi makapagtrabaho, ang dami pang hindi makapasok, said Sergio Ortiz-Luis Jr, President of the Employers’ Confederation of the Philippines (ECOP).

The group calls on the government to allow them to adjust their operation amid the pandemic, noting that they do not see any reason why Metro Manila should not be placed under a lower alert level.

“Yung cases on its own wala namang ginagawang espesyal. Tuloy-tuloy lang naman ang bakuna. Wala namang nagawang espesyal e bumababa na talaga palagay ko for obvious reason na may cycle din siguro. At saka nagkakaroon ng immunity dahil sa vaccine siguro,” Ortiz-Luis said.

ECOP believes that should the economy fully open, businesses will have the opportunity to recover from their losses brought by the COVID-19 crisis.

The government’s technical advisory group on COVID-19, however, said they still need to further study the proposal.

“Kailangan po talagang pag-aralan yan. Alam naman natin very dynamic naman ang ating IATF sa pagtingin ng numbers. Yung number sa data graph ang important po. Yung on the ground po. Yung MMDA mayors na tinitingnan po talaga kung paano nagbibehave ang mga tao,” said Dr. Edsel Salvana of the DOH-Technical Advisory Group.

Malacañang, on its part, appeals to the public not to be too complacent amid the decreasing number of COVID-19 cases.

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said the need to observe the minimum health protocol is still the same.

“Bagamat ang datos nagpapakita nga po na maaaring magbaba sa alert level ang Metro Manila, importante huwag tayong magpabaya. Huwag tayong mag-isip na walang pandemya. Nandiyan pa rin si COVID-19. Magpatuloy pa tayo at lalong paigtingin ang mask, hugas, iwas,” he reiterated.

On the other hand, should the IATF approve the placement of NCR under Alert Level 2 in mid-November, business establishments will also be allowed to operate with up to 50% indoor capacity and 70% capacity outdoors. —/mbmf (from the report of UNTV Correspondent Nel Maribojoc)

Business recovery very likely as restrictions ease — employers group

Maris Federez   •   October 22, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Employers Confederation of the Philippines (ECOP) is confident that businesses will be able to recover soon as alert level restrictions begin to ease in selected areas in the country.

ECOP said that business owners are seeing gradual recovery from losses as protocols to counter the spread of COVID-19 relax.

“Kapag nagnonormal yung restrictions mag-uumpisa nang kumita ang mga iyan,” said ECOP president Sergio Ortiz-Luis Jr.

Ortiz-Luis added that it is now time for the government to allow companies to operate with a larger percentage of their workforce to help them recover.

He said all it takes for them is to implement stricter health protocols in their areas of employment.

Employers must also not make vaccination status a basis for accepting employees returning for work.

“Kapag tinanong mo meron din ilan-ilang nagpa-positve sa workplace eh. Pero kapag ininspeksiyon mo saan nakuha, hindi naman doon sa workplace eh. Nakuha sa paghanap ng sasakyan, pagpila sa kung ano-anong pinipilahan,” Ortiz-Luis said.

“Napakaraming pila: pila sa ayuda, pila sa COMELEC, pila sa paghanap ng sasakyan, paglalakad, pagtitipon, paghahanap ng pagkain. Doon nakukuha. Hindi sa workplace. Bakit hindi mo papasukin?” he added.

However, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) stressed that vaccination, alongside the efficient implementation of quarantine restrictions, is still the key to economic recovery.

“The continued decline in COVID-19  infection cases owing to the speedier COVID vaccine rollout and more effective granular lockdown will help underpin the economy’s gradual reopening,” said BSP Governor Benjamin Diokno.

Currently, the National Capital Region is under Alert Level 3 until the end of October, wherein several business establishments have been allowed to operate with limited capacity. —/mbmf (from the report of UNTV Correspondent Nel Maribojoc)

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