MANAGEMENT of LBC Express has assured its services at all its branches in Davao City will not be interrupted amid threats of a labor strike from its union bloc, the LBC Davao Employees Union.

The union has filed a strike notice with the regional office of the National Conciliation and Mediation Board (NCMB-Davao).

"We would like to assure our customers that there will be no interruption of services arising from this situation. Our branches in Davao will continue to serve your needs with excellence and the same commitment that has made LBC the household name that it is today, and for the last 63 years," Oliver L. Valentin, LBC Southeast Mindanao (SEM) senior vice president for operations, said in statement e-mailed to Sun.Star on Friday.

He said the company has been at the CBA (collective bargaining agreement) negotiation table with the union for the past few months to discuss and determine "the most mutually-beneficial agreement between the two parties."

"Unfortunately, negotiations reached a deadlock and the union filed for a notice of strike and subsequently gathered an affirmative strike vote," Valentin said.

But he added the management has been trying to address the demands and arguments being raised by its union bloc in Davao City.

"All of our union-member associates are enjoying salaries and benefits above those mandated by the government, with an average salary approximately 25 percent above minimum wage and hazard pay. The union is negotiating for an across-the-board application of any mandatory wage increase, on top of the CBA-negotiated increase, and without a wage distortion formula application," he said.

Valentin insisted union-member associates also enjoy "other benefits above and beyond government-mandated benefits and industry standards. LBC associates are entitled to hospitalization loans, should their needs exceed the coverage of the provided HMO and PhilHealth."

"To add, all economic provisions concerns in the current CBA have been agreed upon, consistently, for more than a decade. This is the first time the union is launching a strike, after many years of an agreeable and fair arrangement," he said.