FOR the militant Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU) in the region, the P12 wage increase which will take effect on July 3, 215 is just scraps.
“Mumho nga increase, wala ra na nag-usa ka kutsara, dili gyud igo sa usa ka plato,” said KMU-NMR spokesperson Wildon Barros on the P12-wage increase approved by the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board RTWPB 10 for the workers in the region.
According to RTWPB-Northern Mindanao Wage Order Number RX-18, the increase was approved after it conducted the series of consultation and public hearing where position papers of the labor and management groups were assessed based on the socio-economic conditions vis-à-vis the competitiveness and development of the region.
“The Board finds it imperative to provide an adjustment in the minimum wage to augment the income of workers without significantly affecting business viability and sustainability; further, in recognition of the right of labor to its just share in the fruits of production and in consonance with the national goal of inclusive growth through decent and productive work,” the RTWPB 10 statement on the new Wage Order No. RX-18 read.
This minimum daily wage rate covers workers and employees in the private sector in northern Mindanao but does not include household helpers, family drivers, workers in registered barangay microbusiness enterprises (BSMEs) with certificates of authority.
For Barros, with the incessant price hike of the basic commodities, “atik-atik ra na nila nga naa silay gihimo nga increase.”
Barros cited that the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) assessed that for a family of six to cope with the daily sustenance a daily income of P860 must have been met.
With the P12 wage increase, here in the city, minimum wage workers will receive P318 per day, which is not even half of the estimated cost of living, he added.
“Di japun maapas ang palaliton,” he said.
In order for the families in the country to cope with the basic daily needs, he emphasized, the government should grant the P16,000 wage per month across the country public or private workers.
He said the cost of living for the country is pegged at P1,086 per day or about P32,000 a month and “KMU is only asking half of it, the P16,000 monthly wage increase across the nation.”
With P318 per day, a worker in the city will received about P8,268.
Barros said the management usually resists on any wage increase fearing losses once workers get higher pay.“Naa man gihapun sila’y ginansya, mugamay lang kumpara sa una if ipatupad ang increase nga among gipangayo.”
He furthered that once the P16,000 wage increase across the country, chain reaction will be experienced saying “Kung dako ang sweldo, mudako pud ang capacity nga mu-consume or to purchase their needs mga workers,” he said adding that “mulambo ang economy, paspas ang production, paspas pud ang demand.”
But the current pay of the workers right now would not warrant economic development, Barros said.