BY DHEL NAZARIO
Dec 12, 2023 02:40 PM
The Senate on Monday, December 11, concurred with the Philippines’ ratification of the International Labour Organization (ILO) convention addressing violence and harassment in the world of work.
Voting 20-0-0, members of the chamber approved on third and final reading Proposed Resolution No. 877, concurring in the ratification of the ILO Convention No. 190, or the “Convention Concerning the Elimination of Violence and Harassment in the World of Work” (ILO C190).
According to Sen. Imelda “Imee” Marcos, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, the ILO C190 is the first international treaty to recognize the fundamental right of people to a work free from violence and harassment, including gender-based violence and harassment.
Marcos said the Convention covers the entire world of work: whether in the public or private sector, regardless of the workplace and status of employment, as well as persons in training, interns and apprentices, volunteers, and job applicants.
“The Convention will also help our OFWs (overseas Filipino workers) who are unaware of how they will hold abusive employers liable and those who fear they will be bullied if they report to authorities,” Marcos also stressed in her sponsorship speech.
Senate Majority Leader Joel Villanueva hailed the Senate’s adoption and concurrence to the ratification of International Labor Organization Convention No. 190 (ILO C190) as a new era for advancing workers’ rights and welfare.
Villanueva, co-sponsor of Proposed Senate Resolution No. 877, said that the ILO C190 or the “Convention Concerning the Elimination of Violence and Harassment in the World of Work” provides a global framework to address violence and harassment among workers, including gender-based violence.
“As early as February this year, we filed a resolution urging the Executive Department to ratify ILO C190, and we are grateful that the President acted immediately and endorsed the convention for immediate concurrence of the Senate,” Villanueva said.
“Harmonizing our local legislation with our obligations under ILO C190 is a step towards realizing the world we envision — a world where everyone can contribute and thrive without the fear of violence or harassment; a world where dignity reigns supreme,” Villanueva added.
He believes that the concurrence will help address the violence and harassment at work, both domestically and abroad, especially our Overseas Filipino Workers who remain vulnerable to all types of harassment.
“Napakarami po sa ating mga kababayan dito at sa ibang bansa ang nakakaranas ng pangmamaltrato at karahasan. Dapat na po itong wakasan (A lot of our citizens here and in other countries experience maltreatment and violence. This should be ended),” he stressed.
According to the Department of Migrant Workers, the top three countries with recorded labor and welfare cases are Riyadh with 65,136, Kuwait with 43,225 and Malaysia with 29,049.
“Each number represents a Filipino migrant worker who faced maltreatment, mistreatment, contract violation, contract substitution, sexual harassment, or rape, among others,” the Majority Leader said.
Meanwhile, according to the World Risk Poll 2021, 60 percent of workers in the Philippines have experienced violence and harassment in the workplace. Of the women who were victims, 13 percent were sexually harassed, 9 percent were psychologically and physically harassed, and 12 percent experienced all 3 forms of harassment.
“The Senate’s concurrence to this milestone treaty is not only a commitment but a moral imperative to ensure that no worker, here or abroad, will suffer any form of violence and harassment in the future,” he ended.