On Labor Day, groups in Cebu call to increase minimum wage to P750
CEBU CITY, Philippines – Various militant and labor groups in Cebu on Labor Day, May 1, 2023, joined the calls to implement a ‘livable minimum wage’ in the country.
At least three separate rallies were held in Cebu City during the country’s 141st Labor Day on Monday, said police who also estimated that around a total of 100 individuals hit the streets in Fuente Osmeña Circle and Colon Street to participate in the activities.
Among the groups present on Monday’s rallies included the Alyansa sa mga Mamumuo sa Sugbo-Kilusang Mayo Uno (AMA Sugbo-KMU), Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP), SANLAKAS, and Partido Lakas ng Masa. The groups urged the government to implement a nationwide salary increase, said Jaime Paglinawan, chairperson of AMA Sugbo-KMU.
Paglinawan said they support the calls to pass House Bill No. 7568 which, if passed and enacted, could entitle every employee in the private sector to receive P750 as the minimum wage. Here in Central Visayas, the present minimum wage is P435 per day.
Due to ongoing economic crises such as inflation, the average take-home-pay for Filipino families may not be enough to consider as a ‘decent and living wage’, the labor leader added.
In addition, they also urged the government to abolish contractualization as well as red-tagging and terrorist-tagging of labor leaders.
AMA Sugbo-KMU, on the other hand, criticized the administration of President Ferdinand ‘Bongbong’ Marcos Jr. They accused the President of neglecting workers’ rights and welfare.
“Gipalabi pa ni President Marcos Jr. nga atubangon ang president sa U.S. karong adlawa sa Labor Day kaysa sa pakig-atubang niya sa demanda sa mga mamumuo dinhi sa Pillipinas,” Paglinawan said.
“Mas gipalabi pa niya ang interes sa ekonomiya ug politika sa imperyalistang Amerikano kumpara sa nag-antos nga mamumuo.” a swipe against the administration,” he added.
In the meantime, police said the conduct of Labor Day protests in Central Visayas had been peaceful. According to Police Lt. Col. Gerard Ace Pelare, spokesperson of the Police Regional Office here (PRO-7), they recorded no untoward incidents arising from the rallies.
“They were just expressing their sentiments, and we respect that. We are also grateful that they coordinated with the police in making sure the protests went peaceful,” said Pelare in a separate interview with reporters.
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