Congress, through the House committee on labor and employment moved a step closer towards the passage of the much-awaited bills seeking to end the practices of contractualization and de-regularization of workers by approving the creation of a technical working group (TWG) that will consolidate all 25 measures pertaining to “endo.”
In a hearing held this week which was presided by committee chairman Rep. Randolph Ting (3rd District, Cagayan), the panel approved the creation of the TWG that will consolidate the different Bills in Congress that seek to strengthen the security of tenure of workers in the private sector by ending the practices of contractualization and de-regularization.
Ting said the TWG will use as reference in the TWG discussions House Bill 4444 authored by Rep. Raymond Democrito Mendoza (Party-list, TUCP), HB 556 by Rep. Ariel Casilao (Party-list, ANAKPAWIS) and HB 3556 by Rep. Mark Go (Lone District, Baguio City).
As to the composition of the TWG, Ting said this will include the authors of the bills, representatives of the different labor groups, the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), and other concerned agencies.
In explaining his bill, Rep. Mendoza says that it aims to totally prohibit contracting, sub-contracting, manpower agency hiring, outsourcing, including those undertaken by so-called service cooperatives engaged in manpower supply.
“All workers must be treated as regular employees, doing away with other types or definitions of employment. Moreover, contractualization clashes with the principle of social justice enshrined in our Constitution and must therefore be criminalized. Thus the bill provides penal provisions against violators,” said Mendoza.
On his part, Rep. Go said cases of violation on the prohibition on labor-only contracting and what is commonly called as “5-5-5” or “endo” have become rampant and unabated despite the provisions of the Labor Code and its implementing rules, DOLE Department Order 18-A.
“The guiding principles of DO 18-A provide: Contracting and sub-contracting arrangements are expressly allowed by law and are subject to regulations for the promotion of employment and the observance of the rights of workers to just and humane conditions of work, security of tenure, self-organization and collective bargaining. My bill seeks to regulate outsourcing of work by providing conditions for its practice and penalties for any violation,” said Go.
Go further said his proposal also seeks to resolve recurring problems in the practice of contractualization and to achieve a “win-win” solution for both the employees and employers, and as partners in attaining sustainable growth and development for the country.(hrep-pr)