ITUC AP General Secretary Shoya Yoshida stressed a new social contract for inclusive and income-led growth free from tyranny and inequaity for a principled recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic.
NTUC PHL President Rodolfo M. Capoquian, in his remarks, led solidarity calls (1) for workers killed and injured in workplace accidents, as well as departed trade union leaders; (2) with CTU Myanmar and the people of Myanmar fighting for democracy and human rights; (3) thumbs down to the government response, mishandling and the terrible toll on jobs, earnings, and depredations of Covid-19; (4) thumbs up for the heroic struggle of frontline workers; including NTUC Phl members, among health care workers, farmers and delivery workers, retail and service workers, transport workers, government employees, teachers, among many others, including parents and household members, continuing their risky work amidst Covid-19 and wayward quarantine implementors, and (5) renewed call for ratification of ILO Convention 190 on violence and harassment at work and for intensified work, including advocacy and collective bargaining against violence and harassment at the enterprise level parallel with ratification work.
The BLR/DOLE resource person Atty. Ramon Saura III presented statistics on union registration, certification and collective agreements during the pandemic (Jan 2020 – March 2021) and his observations on Philippine trade union bargaining actions through the years.
Former DOLE undersecretary Benedicto Ernesto Bitonio discussed trends, issues and challenge in organizing and collective bargaining. He advanced his assessment of the most critical bargaining issues where trade unions need to concentrate studies and negotiations amidst the pandemic.
The NTUC Phl women and youth committees (led by chair Milagros Ogalinda and Ronnel Usero), with focal person Rem Sta. Ana, presented the results of their analysis of CBAs – ‘good’ women and youth provisions, as well as noteworthy political and economic provisions which could be pursued as the pandemic reigns.
Lively discussions took place with participants (57% women, 20% youth), officers from NTUC Phl affiliates, officers from local unions, women and youth representatives, and members of bargaining panels. There were a few participants from friendly organizations.
The discussions were part of NTUC Phl’s activities under the ITUC AP/DGB BW/ATUC project on women and youth participation in trade unions and society.