One week before Congress resumes sessions, labor center Kilusang Mayo Uno called on the country’s legislators to prioritize the passage of two bills seeking to legislate a significant wage hike and the junking of contractualization, saying workers need an immediate relief from hunger and poverty.
KMU made the appeal more than a week after the Social Weather Stations released a survey showing that one out of five families experienced not having anything to eat in the last three months, the highest under the government of Pres. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III.
“We are calling on the House of Representatives to give workers and poor people an immediate relief from the intensifying poverty and hunger. We are calling on the country’s legislators to pass the P125 Wage Hike Bill and Regular Employment Bill,” said Roger Soluta, KMU secretary-general.
“We need a significant wage hike to cope with the increasing prices of basic goods and services. We are not asking for a dole-out, but a portion of the value that he have been creating by working,” he said.
“Contractualization has long been a pest to workers and poor people. We want an end to this employment scheme under which workers suffer from low wages, no benefits, the constant threat of being laid off, and no union rights to speak of,” he added.
The P125 Wage Hike Bill is House Bill 375 filed by Anakpawis Partylist Rep. Rafael V. Mariano seeking to legislate a P125 across-the-board wage increase nationwide, while the Regular Employment Bill is HB 5110, filed by the same lawmaker, seeking to end contractual employment schemes.
“Hunger and poverty in the country are not abating; they are in fact becoming worse. It is becoming clearer and clearer that these bills, which workers have been pushing for for so long, are necessary and must be implemented urgently,” Soluta said.
“We vow to intensify our protests in the coming days. We call on workers and poor people to join us in fighting for something that will make Christmas and the coming months a little better for us,” he added. Roger Soluta, KMU Secretary General