DoLE to hold meeting May 9 on wage hike

Published by rudy Date posted on May 3, 2011

Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz yesterday said that the National Capital Region Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board will meet anew on May 9 to deliberate on how much and in what form would the wage increase be given after both the government and the private sectors failed to come out a decision in yesterday’s meeting.

Baldoz urged workers and concerned citizens to attend and submit their petitions for a minimum wage increase to be held at the Philippine Trade Training Center in Pasay City.

“Concerned parties should attend the hearing and present their arguments on the amount of wage increase for workers in the National Capital Region and Metro Manila,” she said.

“The public hearing aims to gather inputs from labor, management, and other interested parties on pertinent issues relevant to the wage petition,” Baldoz said.

National Wages and Productivity Commission chairman Ciriaco Lagunzad III said the wage board will decide whether to raise the minimum wage of workers in Metro Manila which was increased in 2010.

The Regional Wage Board in the NCR has already declared the existence of supervening conditions, citing the ripple effects of oil price hikes in the price of basic commodities to pave the way for wage increase petitions.

“We will hold another public hearing on May 9 and they have committed to make a decision on the issue before the middle of May,” Lagunzad said.

The Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP) has earlier filed a petition for a P75 daily increase for minimum wage earners in the private sector.

Militant groups Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan) and Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU) are also asking for a P125 wage hike.

If the P125 wage hike is approved, the minimum daily wage for Metro Manila workers will be P529.

As of April 2011, non-agriculture workers in Metro Manila earn P404 a day, while those in the agriculture sector earn P367.

Meanwhile, the Partidong Manggagawa criticized President Aquino for Labor Day announcement, saying P-Noy did not really break bread with labor but he broke tradition by giving nothing to workers, not even a “consuelo de bobo” of non-wage benefits.

“Even if NCR Wage Board approves the P75 petition, it will not be enough to bridge the huge gap between the minimum wage and the cost of living.

The disparity between the P404 minimum wage and the cost of living is P606 or 150 percent of the ordinary wage. Even if two members work — which is the buy one take one policy of the government — then their combined income will not be enough to feed the entire family,” PM chairman Renato Magtubo said. –Mina Diaz, Daily Tribune

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