MANILA (22-March-2012) — An alliance of media workers, journalists and publishers expressed its support to the P125 (US$2.90 based on the prevailing foreign exchange rate of P43.10:$1.00) legislated wage hike, which the Anakpawis Partylist had been pushing in Congress since 2004.
In a statement, the Alab ng Mamamahayag (ALAM) said that it is not impossible for a substantial wage hike in the Philippines since other third world countries had done the same thing to empower their workers.
National Press Club (NPC) president, ALAM chairperson and Hataw news tabloid publisher Jerry Sia Yap stressed that those who work, fair and square, should gather the fruits of their labor.
Meanwhile, ALAM president and lawyer Bertini Causing said, raising the salary of daily wage earners by P125 will help them cope with the soaring prices of commodities and services.
ALAM officials also said that they do not believe the big companies’ alibi that raising the salaries of their workers by P125 or by P2,500 ($58.01) per month would cost the company’s closure.
In the meantime, Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU) chided the alleged erroneous computation made by the Palace’s “think-tanks” on the amount that the industries should shell-out, annually, for the wage increase.
Deputy spokesperson Abigail Valte said that the businesses, all over the country, should at least shell out around P1,605,500,000 trillion (P1.6 sextillion) to make the wage increase possible. This, according to Valte, will hurt the industries more and will result to massive layoffs.
“This is an old tactic: to portray workers as asking for too much and making many unreasonable demands. But workers know that labor costs account for a very small portion of production costs and that wages are very small compared with the profits of capitalists – especially those of the big foreign and local ones,” explains KMU national chair Elmer “Bong” Labog.
In 2011, independent think-tank IBON Foundation, Inc. said the P125 across-the-board wage hike, nationwide will only amount to a 15% reduction of profits for establishments that have 20 employees and higher. [Noel Sales Barcelona/CBCPNews]