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Saturday, October 1, 2011

KMU supports radio station workers’ strike notice

Labor center Kilusang Mayo Uno expressed its full support for the Radio Mo Nationwide (RMN) Employees’ Union which filed a notice of strike last Wednesday before the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) in Davao after negotiations for a collective bargaining agreement reached a deadlock last September 23.

The RMN-EU, a media union affiliated with the KMU, has been asking for a P75-increase in workers’ daily pay. The RMN management, however, refused to grant the workers’ demand, claiming a P7.9 million financial loss last year.

“We have full support for the workers of RMN Davao who are fighting for a wage hike. Workers’ demand for a significant wage hike is just, especially when the company is earning millions from the workers’ labor,” said Roger Soluta, KMU secretary-general.

“Workers urgently need a significant wage hike especially amidst the continuous oil price hikes, the runaway prices of basic goods and services, the imposition of new taxes and decreasing budget to social services,” he added.

Rey Hernan Fabe, president of the RMN-EU, belied the management’s claim that the company is incurring losses, saying that based on the number of monthly advertisement spots in the company, RMN’s combined income for its Davao AM and FM stations is anywhere near P24 million monthly.

“The Philippine Airlines case is instructive: financial losses have been the mantra of companies for pressing down workers’ wages and cutting ‘costs’ in implementing contractualization and other labor flexibilzation schemes,” said Soluta.

“News posted on the RMN’s website also runs contrary to the company’s claim that its profit is decreasing. RMN is consistently on top the radio stations in Davao and is surely earning a lot,” added Soluta.

RMN AM Davao station garnered 37.1% share points, higher by 17% compared with its nearest contender, according to the radio website.

KMU also condemned the company for removing union members’ daily radio programs, assigning them to field work, and denying meal allowances, saying these are clear indications of harassment.

“We are on calling everyone, especially those in Mindanao to support the radio workers’ fight for a wage hike. We also hope that the RMN management would heed the workers’ legitimate call for a wage hike,” Soluta said. Roger Soluta, KMU Secretary General

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