Solon wants to keep working hours to 48 hours per week

By Charissa Luci-Atienza

Camarines Sur Rep. Luis Raymund Villafuerte wants to amend the country’s Labor Code to put a ceiling on the maximum number of working hours to 48 hours per week in order to protect the well-being of the employees.

He filed House Bill 9048 to amend Article 83 of the Presidential Decree No. 442, otherwise known as the Labor Code of the Philippines, as amended.

Rep. Luis Raymund "LRay" Favis Villafuerte Jr. (Facebook / MANILA BULLETIN)
Camarines Sur Rep. Luis Raymund “LRay” Villafuerte (FACEBOOK / MANILA BULLETIN)

“This bill intends to help ease the worries of employees in commuting to work by allowing alternative working arrangements,” Villafuerte, one of the principal authors of the Telecommuting Act, said.

He said employers are allowed the option to implement a type of flexible working arrangement that fits the needs of their company and their employees .

“In amending Article 83 of the Labor Code, we remove the limiting “normal work hours” from eight hours a day for five days to a more flexible work duration. This means that employees may clock in to work at any time as long as they complete the required number of hours,” Villafuerte said.

Under HB 9048, the normal hours of work of any employee shall not exceed eight hours a day except when the exigency of business operations or national emergency requires the adoption of alternative work arrangements subject to conditions as may be predetermined by the Secretary of Labor and Employment.

The bill provides that the hours of work shall not exceed 48 hours a week.

“With the recent enactment of Republic Act 11165, or the Telecommuting Act, which allows workers to clock in hours through partial or total substitution of computers of telecommunication technologies, it is this representation’s hope that this proposed bill adds to the intent of the Telecommuting Act in providing employees the opportunity to be productive in the workforce no matter the situation they may find themselves in,” Villafuerte said.

He said his measure also seeks “to ease and decongest the traffic situation in Greater Manila and lessen the stress of both citizens and the government.”

House Bill 9048 tasks the DOLE Secretary to promulgate the necessary implementing rules and regulations within 90 days from the effectivity of the proposed Act.