Labor center Kilusang Mayo Uno hailed the Court of Appeals ruling that ABS-CBN workers whom the television network considered as contractuals are regular employees entitled to benefits given to regulars, saying the decision is important in the fight against contractualization.
The CA overturned the decision made by the National Labor Relations Court on the case filed by about 70 ABS-CBN workers and ruled that there is an employee-employer relations between the workers and the TV network and that the petitioners’ work are both necessary and desirable to ABS-CBN’s business.
“We welcome this victory of ABS-CBN workers who dared stand up against a company owned by the powerful Lopez family close to the Aquino government. We never had a doubt that they are indeed employees of the TV network, contrary to the ABS-CBN management’s claims, and that the work they perform are necessary and desirable for the company’s business,” said Roger Soluta, KMU secretary-general.
“We know however, that it will still take a long time, perhaps years, before ABS-CBN workers can enjoy the fruits of this victory. The Lopez family is hell-bent on continuing to implement their contractualization scheme in ABS-CBN and will most likely appeal the decision until it reaches the Supreme Court,” he added.
A picture of contractualization
KMU said the ABS-CBN workers’ plight is an illustration of the employment situation in the country, with most of the country’s workers employed as contractuals.
“The plight of ABS-CBN workers higlights the situation of the country’s workers, majority of whom are now contractuals. Capitalists always deny the existence of an employer-employee relationship while exploiting workers by making them perform functions that are necessary and desirable to business,” Soluta said.
“What is needed, however, is not just the waging of long drawn-out legal battles against contractualization. What is needed is the scrapping of government policies that legalize this most anti-worker of employment schemes,” he added.
KMU has been calling for the junking of the Department of Labor and Employment Order No. 18-02 and the Labor Code which legalize contractualization in the country. It is also calling for the passage of House Bill 5110, or the Regular Employment Bill, filed by Anakpawis Partylist Rep. Rafael V. Mariano, which seeks to end contractualization by amending a section of the Labor Code. Roger Soluta, KMU Secretary General