Criminalization and anti-union measures heightened in 2014
(Second part of a three-part series of Trade Union and Human Rights Situation 2014 )
In the year 2014, CTUHR documented a total of 82 cases of trade union and human rights violations that affected almost 10,000 workers (See Tables 8a and 8b). Dismissals, refusal to bargain with the union, and union busting are the most glaring economic violations affecting several thousands of workers. At least one worker was extra-judicially killed while hundreds more were harassed, threatened and detained. Number of victims of legal offensives increased by 75 percent as more unionists were slapped with false criminal charges. Violations of labor standards were also documented even as the government reported high compliance rating of private enterprises with less than 200 workers.
Violations of labor standards
CTUHR documented several cases of labor standard violations notably non-payment of minimum wages. For example in Ardi Construction and Development Corp. in Pasig, workers only receive P 350 to 420 a day in contrast to the minimum wage of P466. Workers in Creative Stone Tech. Corp in Bulacan also receive wages below the minimum rate of P349. Creative Stone, a company which produces kitchen sinks and tiles and employs at least 100 employees, pays only P250 for 8 hours of work each day.
The government reported a 98 percent compliance to labor standards of enterprises with 200 or more workers with 11 regions including CARAGA registered 100 percent compliance rate, 99.2 percent for Region IV-A or CALABARZON and 99.8 percent in the National Capital Region. However, it must be noted that the government adopts a “self-assessment” procedure for big enterprises. This means that companies with 200 or more workers need not be inspected by labor standard inspectors; rather these companies evaluate their own compliance with the labor standards. But for companies with less than 200 workers, the DOLE inspected 29,248 enterprises in 2014 and found 84.6 percent compliance rate: 89.8 percent in the NCR, 83.2 percent in CALABARZON, 70.8 percent in CARAGA, and 54.9 percent in Region IV-B or MIMAROPA.
Loose regulations and enforcement of occupational health and safety standards keep workers barely protected from occupational deaths and hazards resulting in 11 more worker deaths in the year 2014. Three separate accidents claimed the lives of workers in the following companies: Hanjin Heavy Industries Subic Zambales (1); Asia Metro Tech, Pasay (8); and Ardi Const and Development Corp. (2) (See Table#). Similar to DOLE’s guidelines on basic labor standards, companies with 200 or more workers merely undergo self-assessment to check their compliance to OHS standards. In the year 2014, the DOLE reported having inspected 3,711 workplaces with less than 200 workers, 88.3 percent of which complied to OHS standards.
Read full article @ctuhr.org
6 March 2015
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