[Statement] Workers fight dictatorship, defend human rights! -PAHRA

Workers fight dictatorship, defend human rights!

Workers fight dictatorship, defend human rights!

The Philippine Alliance of Human Rights Advocates (PAHRA) is one with the working class in commemorating Labor Day. We add our voices in solidarity with the toiling masses specifically in demanding for the end of contractualization in the country and the respect, protection and fulfilment of workers’ rights.

The Duterte administration’s failure to end contractualization after almost two years in power, reveals even more its inability to heed the sentiments of the workers, to protect their rights and promote their interests. Its pronouncements have been mere rhetoric, devoid of sincerity and substance. Its commitment to advancing the right to decent work and to just and favourable working conditions remains to be empty promises as illustrated by the national government’s rejection of labour –related recommendations during the 3rd cycle of the Universal Period Review in 2017. These include its refusal and/or lack of political will to end contractualization, implement a national minimum wage, address gender wage gap, and sexual harassment of women in the workplace.

Furthermore, the Philippine government has refused to take concrete measures to address exploitation and abuse of women migrant workers, and to promote the trade union rights of migrant workers.

While unemployment and underemployment continue to plague the labour sector, increases in the prices of basic commodities have consistently taken its toll on the lives of majority of the Filipinos who are minimum wage earners. Experts say that actual minimum wage of Php512 is just 43.8% of the Php1,168 family living wage needed.

We reiterate that contractualization is a violation of human rights because it denies and limits access to decent work.

That contractualization has violated the right of workers to organize and bargain for higher wages, social security, and among others. It has also put workers into situation of accepting unfair labor practices and violations of their political rights.

PAHRA enjoins the defenders of workers’ rights not only to lead the people in demanding for decent job opportunities for all so that migration for work becomes one of choice and not of necessity, an immediate wage increase, for the government to ensure job security and accessible social services to assist workers and their families in providing their basic needs instead of its anti-human rights policies and actions espousing culture of violence in the country. But also help intensify the resistance against the resurgence of another dictatorship.

We also reiterate our call for justice for workers’ rights defenders who have fallen victims of killings and various forms of injustice.

Workers fight dictatorship, defend human rights!

May 1, 2018

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