Eddie Garcia bill to end overbearing ways of showbiz superstars

Published July 6, 2019, 4:36 PM

by CJ Juntereal

By Ben Rosario

The overbearing ways of show business superstars and prima donnas will be over under the proposed “Eddie Garcia Act” that has gained instant support after it was filed at the House of Representatives.


Authored by 1PACMAN Party-list Rep. Michael “Mikee” Romero, House Bill No. 181 – the proposed “Eddie Garcia Act” – seeks to create occupational safety and health standards for the film, television and theater industry in the country.

“The film, television, and theater industry involve a unique business, and as such, presents several unique health and safety hazards that require special attention,” said Romero.

“Under this House bill, the film, television, and theater industry are required to provide a safe workplace for all its workers and employees. Workplace safety and health protocols shall be primordial to eliminate personal injuries, illness, or even death from occurring inside the workplace,” he explained.

So titled in honor of the memory of the late veteran actor Eddie Garcia, HB 181 proposes to limit working hours on the movie set between eight and 12 hours, which already covers waiting hours in between takes, among other safety and security provisions.

Show business personalities blame the holding of long hours of taping and shooting in films to lead actors and actresses who are usually tardy in reporting to the set, thus, causing undue delays that put at risk the health of other involved actors and personnel.

Romero said setting limits for filming and taping of movies will safeguard the health of all personnel and actors on the movie set.

HB 181 also provides for mandatory personnel and production insurance coverage and the creation of a standard operating procedure for safety and medical emergencies on the set.

It also provides for emergency operational standards and protocol in the film, television, and theater industry for scenes that involve the use of explosive, pyrotechnics, smoke and fog, gasoline operated equipment, scaffoldings, and others that may endanger the physical safety of all persons involved.

Under the bill, the producer or management is tasked to identify safety and health hazards in the workplace.

Garcia, 90, suffered serious internal injuries after tripping on loose cables on the production set of a regular television series being taped by GMA Network on June 8, 2019.

The multi-awarded actor was known for his professionalism and never reported late on the set even during his prime as among the most popular actors in the country, noted Romero.

The proposed Eddie Garcia Act makes it mandatory for the producer or the corporation involved to pay the full hospitalization bill of personnel who suffer injuries as a result of accidents on the set.

The cost of loss of livelihood will also be paid for by the employer or producer.

Non-compliance to provisions of the bill may cost the management a fine of not less than P100,000 for each day the violation is committed.

For subsequent offenses, the imposable penalty is P1 million and revocation of the franchise to operate.