NAGKAISA labor coalition stands firm against PCCI’s opposition to legislative wage hike

THE NAGKAISA Labor Coalition strongly opposes the recent resolution passed by the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) that rejects a legislative wage increase.

Itinanggi ng NAGKAISA ang argumento ng mga employer. Ito ang tamang panahon para sa pag-increase ng sahod, lalo na’t hindi pa lahat ng Regional Tripartite Wage and Productivity Boards (RTWPB) ay nakakapaglabas ng kanilang sariling utos para sa wage hike.

NAGKAISA firmly challenges PCCI’s stance against the proposed wage hike of Php150 per day. Failing to act on a nationwide wage increase disregards the essential needs of our workforce as they grapple with the high inflation rate amid the ongoing economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. Opposition to a wage hike contradicts the needs and rights of 7our nation’s workforce, not to mention the prevalent malnutrition and undernutrition among their children.

This is the time for wage hike. Our skilled workers, professionals, nurses, and healthcare workers are increasingly choosing to migrate abroad due to the significantly lower wages in our country. Abroad, they can earn a month’s salary in just a week of hard work. The minimum wages in Indonesia and Malaysia far exceed those in our nation. The take-home pay of our Vietnamese counterparts is also higher than that of Filipinos

The economy is exhibiting signs of recovery, and this progress should not bypass the very individuals who fueled it. The wage orders issued by the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Boards (RTWPBs) are often seen as insufficient, failing to address the glaring wage disparities among regions and within the agricultural sector. These disparities perpetuate wage discrimination and hinder economic inclusivity.

Historically, employers have opposed wage increases, fearing that they will have to allocate a larger share of profits to their workers. Wage hike is always “horrible” or “bad timing” for capitalists. The reason why workers need to assert their right to a family-sustaining wage. As workers have no national bargaining opportunity, a national across-the-board wage increase by legislation is an essential step toward achieving this goal.

It is crucial to remember that businesses and the workforce are not mutually exclusive entities; they are interdependent. A fair wage hike can stimulate consumer spending and further economic growth, which, in turn, benefits the business community.

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