Online service for labor concerns activated | BICOL TODAY

Online service for labor concerns activated

Labor lawyers and advocates have launched the Facebook page ‘Labor Concerns PH’, a free legal assistance service for different labor issues such as contractualization, illegal termination, unjust working conditions, among others.

“Facebook is the best platform to undertake impactful legal advocacies for our working people, as even the lowest paid day laborer has access to social media platforms.” This was the statement of Terry Ridon, page administrator of Labor Concerns PH.

Ridon, former party-list lawmaker and urban poor chief of party-list Rodrigo Duterte, said Labor Concerns PH was created together with his former core staff in the urban poor agency, most of whom were labor and community organizers.

“We envisioned a platform to continue serving the public in a most effective manner even outside of government, and thus far we have already addressed almost six hundred unique labor complaints since creating the page last March.”

Ridon said the Labor Concerns PH’s services range from general legal advice thru the page’s Facebook Messenger to actual legal representation before agencies within the labor department.

The page currently has more than 1100 likes, and have reached more than twenty-five thousand Facebook users.

“The online service is free, and our dedicated staff responds to all queries with a 100% response rate within thirty minutes.”

BPOs top number of complaints

Ridon said most of the complaints they received came from the BPO industry.

“BPO employees have a wide-range of grievances in their industry: built-in overtime schedules, equivocal metrics-based termination, delayed processing of clearances and backwages, among others.”

Ridon said BPO employees should be wary of fly-by-night BPO companies, which have no proven track record in the industry.

“We received one complaint in which a BPO company abruptly stopped paying salaries to its employees for already completed work, saying its foreign client suddenly terminated its services. This situation is nothing but bare-faced fraud, as the company had the legal obligation to pay its employees for already completed work. We then advised the employee to file the appropriate complaints with the labor department.”

OFW support

Ridon said some complaints came from OFWs subjected to unfair and unjust working conditions abroad.

“There is truth to unfortunate reports that many of our OFWs sign two employment contracts: one contract in the Philippines to comply with strict labor laws, and another in their host country in which the terms and conditions of their employment are as onerous as a significantly lower salary or an entirely different job.”

Ridon said they advice complaining OFWs to immediately seek repatriation and file the appropriate charges against their recruiters as soon as they are back home.

Contractualization

“We also had to deal with several complaints alleging contractualization by top-level companies. One company was running an entire factory composed mostly of contractual labor, even if their jobs were directly related to the main business of the company – classic prohibited labor contracting.”

Ridon said the employees were advised to file complaints directly with the labor department to initiate inspection proceedings in their workplace.

Deputize labor groups vs contractualization

“The key to ending contractualization is for the labor department to undertake a measurably proactive role in cracking down on prohibited labor-only contracting.”

Ridon said swift workplace inspections should be undertaken and judgment rendered within the same periods ordered by the President on government transactions.

“Labor and advocacy groups can also be engaged as officially deputized partners of the labor department to combat prohibited labor-only contracting.”

Posted by on April 30, 2018. Filed under Headlines,Nation. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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