THE Department of Labor and Employment (Dole) 7 has awarded over P171 million in monetary benefits to workers through its Single Entry Approach (SenA) program.
DOLE 7 Director Johnson Cañete said that as of December 2018, they recorded around 5,226 workers who received more than P171 million in benefits. This covers workers in Central Visayas.
Cañete said the amount covered the workers’ monetary claims, which centered mostly on underpayment of wages, maternity claims and non-payment of 13th month pay, non-payment of holiday pay premiums and overtime pay.
SenA is a program that settles disputes between workers and employers without going to the labor court to avoid additional expenses and time.
Cañete said SenA’s positive outcome resulted from the efforts exerted by the Dole 7’s field offices and divisions, which collectively handled more than 3,000 requests for assistance (RFA) last year.
He added that under SenA program, the conflicts arising from employer-employee relationships are expected to get settled within 30 calendar days through conciliation and mediation proceedings.
In 2018, Cañete said the average duration for the designated SenA desk officers to settle and dispose requests only lasted for 11 days.
“Of the RFAs handled, close to 3,000 were settled, resulting in the high turnout of monetary benefits received by affected workers,” Cañete said.
Cañete added that the desk officers ensured RFAs filed and received were acted upon immediately, and that resolutions to work-related concerns were arrived at, at the earliest possible time without having to wait for and observe the 30 days maximum period.
In January 2018 alone, 610 RFAs were lodged at Dole 7 due to nonpayment of 13th month pay-related concerns raised by workers.
In August, workers under the program claimed a total of P29 million, the biggest amount awarded to workers. (EOB)