Labor groups to stage huge rally on National Heroes Day

Published August 21, 2019, 2:54 PM

by AJ Siytangco

By Leslie Ann Aquino 

The United Workers will conduct the “Martsa ng Manggagawa Laban sa Kontraktwalisasyon” towards Mendiola, Manila on August 26, National Heroes Day, to call for an end to contractualization.

(Defend Job Philippines / MANILA BULLETIN)
(Defend Job Philippines / MANILA BULLETIN)

Composed of trade unions, labor federations and workers organizations under the banners of Nagkaisa Labor Coalition, Paggawa, Kilusang Mayo Uno and allied groups, the United Workers said they will continue to advocate for a pro-worker End ENDO Bill while calling for workers to organize and join unions.

“We shall pursue a pro-worker legislation that shall End ENDO and abusive contractualization, despite the veto of President Rodrigo Duterte of the Security of Tenure Bill in the last Congress, on the basis of unfounded threats by employers that it will allegedly cause workers’ displacement,” Julius Cainglet, vice president of the Federation of Free Workers, a member of the Nagkaisa Labor Coalition.

“We won’t fall into the trap of local, Chinese, American and other investors who claim that there’s a need to balance so-called ‘security of capital’ with employment security. These employers’ groups deceive the public and hide the fact that our laws and regulations have long favored employers and promoted contractualization, while attacking the rights of Filipino workers, including the right to security of tenure and the right to unionize,” he added in a statement.

President Duterte’s recent veto of the Security of Tenure Bill, Cainglet said he dismissed three years of legislative work and workers’ active participation in the process.

“The ddministration has given everything to business to ensure their continuous profit, while tying down workers to meager wages on short contracts through DOLE (Department of Labor and Employment) issuances. Employers have resorted to firing workers—whether they are profiting or not—to avoid regularizing them, avoid unions or bust unions,” he said.

Cainglet said, as always, government was more preoccupied with ensuring profits of business, while ignoring the rights of workers.

“For two decades, labor laws and regulations have sided with business even as the so-called growth over the last decade have solely benefitted them as well. Thus, an End ENDO Law or Security of Tenure Law should favor workers to strike a true balance,” he said.