ENDO, the common word for labor sub-contacting or contractualization– a practice that has been allowed by the government so that employers may terminate a worker’s employment before he reaches the mandatory six months prior to regularization. ENDO is the most excruciating experience for young workers. It strips them of their right to security of tenure, worker benefits such as social security, overtime pay, paid leaves, among others. This practice has been legalized with Department of labor and Employment (DOLE) Department Order No. 18-A series of 2011. President Rodrigo R. Duterte has promised that his administration will put an end to this practice.
On August 4, 2016, Young Christian Workers of the Philippines (PYCW), together with the Labor Ministry of Novaliches, Center for Trade Union and Human Rights (CTUHR) trooped to the DOLE offices and sat down with Labor Undersecretary Joel B. Maglunsod for an exchange of information about the actual state of the workers today.
Usec. Maglunsod revealed that DOLE statistics show that out of the more than 900,000 establishments, 5,150 are registered sub-contractors and contractors . It is estimated that the actual number is more than 26,000. The total number of workers affected is upwards of 416,000.
Other issues that were discussed related to compliance with occupational safety and health standards, which Usec. Maglunsod mentioned, has to have safeguards from the retaliation of business owners against the DOLE inspectors. Another issue is the state of organized labor. Only 10% of the workers in the country are members of trade union organizations.
The contingent of young workers presented the following recommendations to Usec. Maglunsod:
- Install electronic billboards in industrial areas or at the entrance of the factories, which should be visible to the workers, advertising their labor rights in the local dialect so they can understand.
- A television or radio program discussing issues of workers which is sponsored by DOLE. e.g., inviting workers as guests to share their experiences such as type of work, salary and benefits
- Conduct medical missions and provide financial assistance and livelihood programs for workers who are victims of undesirable labor practices.
- Review of labor policies and regulation which do not respect the rights of the workers.
- Scrapping of Department Order No. 18 -2 (Rules Implementing Articles 106 to 109 of the Labor Code, as Amended)
- Amendment of DOLE Department Order 115-11, making it mandatory for business establishments to comply with labor standards of health and safety.
Usec. Maglunsod announced the issuance of Department Order 162 which seeks to suspend hiring of new applicants for contractors and sub-contractors under DOLE Department Order 18-A. He also mentioned the other measures that the department is implementing such as enabling DOLE employees to better deal with the workers’ concerns. He said that their goal is that by the end of 2016, the ENDO situation will have been addressed already.
From a report by Errol Alonzo/PYCW