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Bacolod City, Philippines Thursday, January 25, 2018
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RTWPB 6 waiting for
other wage petitions

The Regional Tripartite Wage and Productivity Board (RTWPB) will not tackle a petition for a wage increase in Western Visayas if it will come from only one sector, and will wait for other petitions.

Regional director, Johnson Cañete, of the Department of Labor and Employmentsaidyesterday that more petitions from all labor stakeholders to increase wages should be made before they will be deliberated on by the RTWPB.

Last Monday, Philippine Agricultural, Commercial, and Industrial Workers Union-Trade Union Congress of the Philippines filed a petition asking for an increasein wages in Western Visayas after the implementation of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion law this year.

The petition for an increase ranging from P130 to P150 more in wages of workers was made as fuel and other commodity prices continue to increase.

Cañete, who also chairs the RTWPB, said in a phone interview yesterday that they already received PACIWU petition and will wait for other labor groups and stakeholders, like employers groups, to filetheir petitions.

“We will wait for the others to file a petition before we deliberate on it, and conduct consultations with all affected sectors, and set up public hearings on whether to approve it or not,” he said.

In line with the TRAIN implementation, Cañete said they have already heard government agencies like the Bureau of Internal Revenue and the Department of Trade and Industry say that the new law will have no effect on the workers, but they still need to hear the woes of the people.

“The view (on TRAIN) is still different from the ground, that is why we are conducting consultations with different labor sectors to get a clearer picture of the situation,” he said, adding that if the law has a direct effect on people, DOLE will act on it.

Cañete said that consultations between the labor and management sectors will be made next month as it is thetime for wage petition.

With the labor group asking for a wage increase, Cañete also said that as RTWBP chair, he will also push for uniform floor wages for all laborers in various industries in the Western Visayas.

He said it has always been the goal of the chair of the entire wage board, given that everyone is just paying the same price for goods and services.

However, how much the floor wage will be is still to be determined as it needs data and consultations from other government agencies like the DTI, DOLE, and National Economic and Development Authority, that are also members of RTWBP, he said.

RTWPB labor representative Wennie Sancho said yesterday that the PACIWU-TUCP petition was received by the wage board Tuesday.

The RTWPB will determine whether it is sufficient in form and substance, after which p ublic consultations and hearings will follow along with the board deliberations, Sancho said. *MLG


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