Apparently taking cue from the man he has endorsed for the Presidency, PDP Laban President Senator Aquilino Pimentel III has filed a bill which seeks to end the practice of labor contractualization in the country.
Pimentel’s move followed closely a public pronouncement by leading Presidential candidate and Davao City Mayor Rody Duterte that once elected President, he would end labor contractualization.
Labor contractualization is a practice where labourers are hired by big companies such as shopping malls through service providers to avoid establishing an employer-employee relationship.
Every six months, the workers are terminated and then rehired again.
Duterte has criticised this practice saying it is a great injustice to the Filipino workers because it deprives them of security of tenure and it prevents them from improving their skills.
“If this country’s billionaires do not like me to end job contractualization, then you better prepare your money and start buying votes because I will really end this oppressive practice,” Duterte said last weekend.
A Philippine Daily Inquirer report by Maila Aiger said “Pimentel’s Senate Bill No. 3030 aims to strengthen the prohibition against labor-only contracting, amending for the purpose Presidential Decree No. 442, otherwise known as the Labor Code of the Philippines as amended.”
In a statement issued yesterday, Pimente said the Philippine Constitution provides that he said that “the State affirms labor as a primary social economic force.”
Pimentel’s move is seen as the first step to ensure the immediate implementation of the move to end contractualization under Duterte’s Presidency.
Should he win in the 2016 elections, Duterte, who is leading in the Presidential surveys, would be able to implement the move against contractualization by signing Pimentel’s proposed measure should it pass Senate.
It is assumed that if the first step to end contractualization is not made now, it would take at a year into Duterte’s presidency before it could be implemented given the legislative processes the bill has to go through.
Duterte has also promised a higher pay of up to P50,000 for the country’s lowest-ranked policemen, soldiers and teachers to improve government services in the country.