Labor groups ask congress, senate bets to champion workers’ agenda
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Labor groups in Cebu will ask congressional and Senate bets to push for workers’ agenda if they get elected into office.
The labor groups’ twin agenda include the implementation of a P750-national minimum wage and the end of all forms of contractualization. They also continue their call for the government to repeal the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (Train)
Jaime Paglinawan, chairperson of Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU) in Cebu, said they will support candidates who will carry in their platform the twin agenda of labor groups.
“Hapit na man ang eleksyon. Amo pod ning ipaabot kining gitawag nato nga workers’ agenda para sa mga nanagan sa pagkasenador ug nanagan sa pagka-congresista,” Paglinawan said in the sidelines of their Labor Day mobilization protest on Wednesday morning, May 1, 2019.
(The election day is drawing near. We want to bring to the attention of senatorial and congressional candidates our workers’ agenda.)
At 7:30 a.m. on Wednesday, May 1, 2019, progressive labor groups gathered near Fuente Osmeña Circle along Osmeña Boulevard and marched to Colon Street in Cebu City’s downtown area for their Labor Day protest mobilization.
Police Major Eduard Sanchez, chief of the Abellana Police Station, said about 250 protesters were in attendance during the activity.
“Ang mga issues nga among dalhon karon sa mga maumuo ning adlaw sa pamuo, numero uno, ang panawagan sa pagwagtang sa tanang porma sa kontraktwalisasyon; ikaduha, P750 nga national minimm wage; ug ikatulo, nga i-repeal ang Train Law,” said Paglinawan.
(The issues that we would want to bring to the attention of the labor force this International Labor Day is, first, the call to end all forms of contractualization; second, the implement of the P750-national minimum wage; and third, is the call to repeal the Train Law.)
“After ini, ang KMU mosuporta sa kung kinsa man nga mga union nga moduso ngadto sa wage board sa P750 nga minimum wage,” the labor leader added.
(After this protest, the KMU will support the unions that will file the petition for a P750-national minimum wage before the wage board.)
The groups braved the downpour, which started in the middle of their Labor Day Program in Colon Street and lasted for 30 minutes.
The groups who attended the Labor Day protest are KMU, Alyansa ng Manggagawa (Ama)- Sugbu, Alsa Kontraktwal, Piston, Karapatan, Kabataan Partylist, Anakpawis, Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino and Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan), among others.
In a separate interview, Department of Labor and Employment in Central Visayas (DOLE-7) Regional Director Salome Siaton said they have not received any petition for a wage increase.
She added that in the absence of supervening events in the region, the Regional Tripartite, Wages and Productivity Board (RTWPB), which she chairs, will still have to wait for the last wage adjustment to lapse one year.
RTWPB-7’s last wage order which provided for a P20 increase on the minimum wage of workers was issued in August 2018. /bmjo
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