Fixed wage for drivers, conductors urged-A A +A
Thursday, April 26, 2012
THE Department of Labor and Employment (Dole) told public utility transport operators to heed an order requiring them to provide fixed wage to drivers and conductors.
The labor department gathered Tuesday all operators in the region to orient them on the rules and regulations governing the employment and working conditions of drivers and conductors under Department Order No. 118-12 issued by the department last January.
Dole Regional Director Exequiel Sarcauga said they have to inform the public utility transport operators considering that the Land Transportation and Franchising Regulatory Board (LTFRB) will ask for Labor Standards Compliance Certificate on July 30, 2012.
“We will be the one to issue the compliance certificate required by the LTFRB. We are willing and ready to give the assessment and make sure that companies are putting in place the standards required for them,” Sarcauga said.
The fixed salary for drivers of public utility buses has been eyed as a deterrent to road accidents involving buses, with drivers usually speeding along major highways to pick up passengers and meet their “boundaries,” a share of which has long been the basis of what they took home as their daily pay.
“The arrangement of how the wages are being derived in the transport industry attributed to more road accidents,” he said.
Aside from minimum wage, operators were also asked to give performance-based benefits based on safety performance and profits earned by the transport firm.
“The directive should have been implemented starting March 1. We are now on the process of enforcing the order but we have to educate them first,” Sarcauga said.
Celso Pilande, manager of the Sto. Niòo Visares Transport Services, which operates nine buses plying the Ormoc-Naval route, claimed that shunning away from the traditional commissioned-scheme will be hard for transport operators.
“There are times that there are only few passengers coupled with oil price hikes and expensive spare parts; it will be hard for us to comply that order,” Pilande said.
In response to the complaint, Sarcauga urged the transport sector to form a group and come up with a position paper.
“In the region where competition is very stiff, there is that waiting time of the drivers. There is no income being derived while waiting unlike in populated areas like in Manila. There are some peculiarities that have to be addressed especially in the provinces but we are left with no choice but to implement what is provided in the guideline,” the official added. (Leyte Samar Daily Express)