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Linggo, Setyembre 30, 2018

Criminalization of legitimate labor dissent slammed

Press Release
30 September 2018

Criminalization of legitimate labor dissent slammed

Militant labor group Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP) today denounced the arrest of thirteen officers and members of the DBSN Farm Agriventures Workers Union after they were picked up Wednesday evening by operatives of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group.

The workers were charged with libel under the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012 or Republic Act 10175 after pictures of workers holding flags and placards taken before they left for Manila to hold a camp-out in front of the National office of the Labor department to seek an audience before Secretary Silvestre Bello were uploaded at Facebook.

“This is a classic case of harassment. The owner of DBSN could no longer deny the veracity of the accusations of rampant violations of labor standards in his farm as well as the legitimacy of the workers demand for regularization, the Labor department says so,” claimed BMP president and union legal counsel, Luke Espiritu.

Of the thirteen arrested workers, ten are being detained at Camp Downes at Ormoc City including its union president, Ailieen Claros and spokesperson Josephine Jaballa. The remaining three are held at municipal police station of Albuera.

He explained that the the case filed against the workers could not constitute online libel since both the DOLE regional office and the National Labor Relations Commission have found the company guilty of gross violation of labor laws and ordered the regularization of its employees, even if the management has filed an appeal before the agencies.

Workers at DBSN Agriventures are paid for P285 to work for 15-hour shifts, the regional minimum wage for workers in Region 8 for 8-hours of work, without overtime pay and premium among its many labor standard violation despite being is one of the biggest poultry dressing plants in the country. It was accredited by the National Meat Inspection Service and certified as an ISO company by TUV-Rhineland.

“The sub-human conditions of employees and the outright non-payment is already condemnable, to say the least. To add harassment and criminalization to salvage the owner’s ill reputation and multi-billion profits is new low for an ISO-accredited company,” he deplored.

Upon labor inspection early this year, the poultry farm was found guily of: No proof of coverage or remittance of SSS contributions, non-payment of Overtime Premium Pay, non-payment of Service Incentives Leave Pay, non-payment of Holiday Pay, illegal deduction (personal protective equipment such masks, gloves, and aprons, and delivery and transport expenses by boat), non-payment of Night Shift Differential Pay; Labor-only contracting in violation of D.O 174, and non-payment of 13th Month Pay.

BMP maintained that the criminalization of labor struggles shall not make the workers cower in fear but will only reap a flurry of protests and ignite labor unrest further.

“The right to regular jobs and proper compensation are guaranteed by the constitution and no amount of criminalization could override these rights”.

They likewise called on authorities to dismiss the trumped-up charges, free the detained laborers and expedite the implementation of regularization as ordered by state agencies.

DBSN Agriventures, the poultry supplier of the Magnolia brand of San Miguel Pure Foods Inc. and Jollibee’s ‘chickenjoy’ is based in Albuera, Leyte and is owned Mayor Ramon Oñate, Municipal Mayor of Palompon town, also in Leyte.###

HARASSMENT. Workers of poultry farm DBSN Farm Agriventures decry the criminalization of their legitimate grievances for regularization and proper compensation after they end up in jail for a cyber libel case filed against them by their employer, Mayor Ramon Oñate, Municipal Mayor of Palompon, Leyte.

Martes, Setyembre 25, 2018

BMP warns organized labor from supporting watered down bill

PRESS RELEASE
September 25, 2018
Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP)

As Duterte certifies anti-contractualization bill as urgent: 
BMP warns organized labor from supporting watered down bill

As president Duterte certified Senate Bill 1826 or the “Security of Tenure and End of Endo Act of 2018”, as urgent, socialist labor group Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP) warned today the broad trade union movement from rushing in to support the said measure.

“Organized labor must maintain its critical and independent stance. It should not allow itself to be used as a deodorizer to a fascist regime that is not only quickly losing popular support due to runaway inflation but to also bolster the illusion that the president is fulfilling his campaign promises,” the group said in a statement.

They pointed out that, “Duterte has all the authority to prohibit the contracting out of work, as per Article 106, but he continues to fumble by pointing workers to push for regularization through legislation. He is making a fool out of the Filipino public”.

The militants claim that the Security of Tenure bill was already certified as urgent by the Executive as early as July 2017 when the LEDAC or the Legislative-Executive Development Advisory Council approved the Common Legislative Agenda (CLA) for the 17th Congress.

BMP president Luke Espiritu warned fellow labor leaders that, “The devil is in the details”. He says that labor leaders should enlighten workers to see beyond motherhood statements and grandiose labels and not muddle the issue.

Senate Bill 1826, under its Section 3 permits trilateral work arrangements that contract out usually necessary and desirable work of principal employers to manpower agencies. Hence, despite the supposed limitations, it still allows the scourge of contractualization to continue and to harm workers’ rights and welfare,” said

“As it appears that the process to address the legal basis of contractualization is finally moving, the labor movement should not be foolish to rush its support to either to SB 1826 or House Bill 6908. We should ask: in what direction is it moving to, is it to finally end contractualization or to merely conjure the illusion of a delivery of a popular campaign promise without any betterment to the conditions of millions of contractual employees?

A study of the devilish details would prove that SB 1826 tends to move towards the latter that the former. It is however but a tendency, as compared to HB 6908, which is far, far worse,” Espiritu added.

The BMP is calling on Senate labor committee headed by Senator Joel Villanueva to recast SB 1826 to “show sympathy to the misery by correcting the injustices inflicted on contractual workers instead of favoring the profits of principal employers, who employ contractors to supply them with cheap and docile labor”.

“We demand not a harmonized version of SB 1826 and HB 6908 but a total rejection of the House version. Our basic position is the prohibition of all forms of contractualization. But if the Senate insists on trilateral work arrangements and legitimate job contracting, as a compromise and as a transition phase, we propose that contractual workers should be paid 200% more the wages paid to regular workers.

This, Espiritu says, is not only to protect secure the incomes of employees who do not have continuous livelihood but also to serve as deterrent to the abuse of temporary work schemes against regular employment”. ###

May 1, 2013 rali

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