Senate gives nod to P100 wage hike for private sector workers

MANILA – Senators unanimously approved on Monday the bill seeking to hike the salary of workers in the private sector by PHP100.

Under Senate Bill (SB) 2534, all minimum wage earners in the private sector nationwide, whether agricultural or non-agricultural, are entitled to the PHP100 increase.

Senator Jinggoy Estrada, who sponsored the measure, dismissed again claims that implementing the proposed law could adversely impact businesses and impede economic growth.

Estrada reiterated that a flourishing economy relies on the vitality of its workforce considered the "lifeblood of enterprises."

"A higher minimum wage does not only impact the lives of those directly affected but reverberates throughout our communities, stimulating local economies, and ensuring that people would have more money in their pockets to meet their basic needs," he said.

The last legislated wage hike that was implemented in the Philippines dates back to 1989 with the enactment of Republic Act 6727 or the Wage Rationalization Act, which effectively declared that wages would be set on a regional basis by the regional wage boards.

Meanwhile, the chamber also approved the bill seeking to improve the welfare of workers in the movie industry.

SB 2505, known as the Eddie Garcia Bill, will protect and support movie and television workers from unfair treatment and poor working conditions.

Estrada, the bill's sponsor, said efforts to uplift the welfare of movie and television workers were started 50 years ago by his father, movie actor and former President Joseph “Erap” Estrada, who established the Movie Workers Welfare Foundation primarily to aid industry workers, especially the underprivileged.

"This measure is the Senate’s recognition of the immense talent, dedication, and contribution not just of Filipino artists, but also those behind the camera who put their heart and soul to come up with material for the movie and television industry," he said.

Apart from standardization of working hours, wages, and other wage-related benefits, social security, and welfare benefits, employers will also be mandated in the employment contracts.

Under the measure, a Movie and TV Industry Tripartite Council comprised of representatives from the government, employers, and workers in the movie and TV industry shall also be created. (PNA)

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