Labor groups to stage protest for wage hike legislation

Cebu-based labor and progressive groups have urged anew the National Government to institutionalize a pending bill on wage hike measures, amid the rising cost of commodities due to inflationary pressures.
Cebu-based labor and progressive groups have urged anew the National Government to institutionalize a pending bill on wage hike measures, amid the rising cost of commodities due to inflationary pressures.File photo

CEBU-based labor and progressive groups have urged anew the National Government to institutionalize a pending bill on wage hike measures, amid the rising cost of commodities due to inflationary pressures.

In a press conference on Monday, April 29, 2024, a coalition of Cebu-based labor groups called the Sugboanong Mamumuo Nagkahiusa Alang sa Living Wage (Sana All) Unity, announced plans to stage a rally and activities in commemoration of the International Labor Day on Wednesday, May 1.

The demonstration will start at 6 a.m., from Fuente Osmeña Circle and Plaza Independencia. The groups will proceed to Colon Street, then to the Department of Labor and Employment-Central Visayas’s office on Gorordo Ave.

Sana All Unity is consists of Alyansa sa mga Mamumuo sa Sugbo-Kilusang Mayo Uno (AMA-KMU), Partido Manggagawa, Sentro ng mga Nagkakaisa at Progresibong Manggagawa (Sentro), Buklaran ng Manggagawang Pilipino and Kilusan para sa Pambansang Demokrasya.

Jaime Paglinawan, head of AMA-KMU, said that the coalition will challenge the administration of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., the Senate and the House of Representatives, to pass measures, including House Bill 7871, that will push the increase of the daily minimum wage in the country into a living wage.

Paglinawan said the coalition is urging Congress to pass the bill providing for a P150 across-the-board wage recovery increase in the salary rates of employees and workers in the private sector across regions. The current minimum wage across regions is insufficient to meet the daily needs of millions of Filipinos, he added.

Paglinawan also called on the National Government to implement measures to safeguard workers from the intense heat, such as implementing paid heat breaks and establishing water stations in workplaces.

In a statement, the Sana All coalition said increasing the daily wage will not adversely affect micro, small, and medium enterprises, contrary to the concerns raised by the business sector. Instead, the coalition said it will empower low-income earners to afford basic commodities and in turn, circulate the increased wage back to the economy.

It added that minimum wages set in most regions are below the poverty threshold, limiting the workers’ access to decent healthcare, housing and education. / EHP

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