TUCP applauds senate’s historic decision to ratify ILO convention 190 (ILO C190)

THE Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP), the leading advocate for the rights and welfare of all Filipino workers, enthusiastically welcomes the decision by the Senate to concur with the ratification of the International Labour Organization Convention 190, addressing violence and harassment in the world of work.

“The harsh reality faced by our workers, especially women and our modern-day hero OFWs, compelled me to file House Resolution No. 32, calling for the immediate ratification of ILO C190. It was adopted by the House of Representatives under Speaker Martin Romualdez back in January 2023. In October, President Ferdinand ‘Bongbong’ Marcos, Jr. heeded our call and ratified ILO C190. The Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs chaired by Senator Imee Marcos also gave its nod of approval. And now, the Senate in Plenary has officially concurred with the ratification of C190. Violence and harassment have no place in a modern and modernizing Philippines that is the newest priority investment hub through progressive, worker-centered, and race-to-the-top labor relations; tungo sa Bagong Pilipinas para sa manggagawang Pilipino!” stated House Deputy Speaker and TUCP President Raymond Mendoza.

“After years of advocacy and legislative campaign, as a fellow legislator and as a trade unionist for the cause that lies at the heart of our shared vision of a just and inclusive society, I am ecstatic for the ratification of International Labour Organization (ILO) Convention No. 190, and look forward to a world free from violence and harassment. Regardless if you are a trainee, volunteer, job seeker, or worker irrespective of employment status, and regardless if private or public, formal or informal, and urban or rural sector, ILO C190 protects you, tayong lahat!” added Mendoza.

“The ratification of ILO Convention 190 is a significant milestone in our collective pursuit of creating safe, inclusive, and respectful workplaces. This international agreement is a testament to the commitment of the global community to eradicate violence and harassment in all its forms, emphasizing the importance of fostering environments that prioritize the well-being and dignity of all workers” said Mendoza.

“This ratification is a critical step forward in creating a workplace culture that promotes respect, equality, and inclusivity. TUCP remains committed to supporting the implementation of ILO Convention 190, working collaboratively with government bodies, businesses, and civil society to ensure its effective integration into the Philippines’ legislative and operational frameworks” assured Mendoza.

“ILO Convention 190 is particularly relevant in today’s dynamic and interconnected world, where issues of workplace violence and harassment transcend borders. By adopting this convention, The Philippines demonstrates its dedication to aligning national policies with international standards, reinforcing a shared commitment to uphold human rights and promote equality in the workplace” said TUCP Vice President Luis Corral.

“According to a study, one in every five Filipino workers suffered from violence and harassment at work. Over half experienced it not only once but thrice or more. Fear of losing their jobs amid the survival crisis of unemployment and inflation forced them to suffer in silence from gender-based violence, harassment, discrimination, and corporate impunity. In local terms, ‘kapit sila sa patalim’” added Corral.

“TUCP commends the Senate for its thorough consideration of the convention and recognizing the urgency of addressing the challenges posed by violence and harassment at work. We believe that this decision reflects the Philippines’ dedication to fostering a progressive and socially responsible work environment” said Corral.

“By being the first in Asia and one of the 36 countries that ratified ILO C190, the Philippines’ ratification will inspire other countries to follow suit, ensuring a minimum level of security for the millions of our modern-day hero OFWs who have been vulnerable to abuse and harassment in their respective host countries for all these years. No more Jullebee Ranara, no more Jeanelyn Villavende, and no more Joana Demapilis, among the long list of abuses, bullying, and brutal killings suffered by our kababayans. By ratifying ILO C190, we send a strong message to the world that ENOUGH IS ENOUGH. END VIOLENCE AND HARASSMENT HERE AND ELSEWHERE” explained Corral.

“This is a ‘win-win’ situation for labor, business, and for our country since international trade, such as EU GSP+, US GSP, and the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF), are all tied to upholding labor rights. By ending violence and harassment that demoralizes workers and disrupts productivity, more and better investments will enter the country and generate more and better jobs for our people” said Corral.

“As we celebrate this historic occasion, TUCP encourages other nations to follow suit and embrace the principles outlined in ILO Convention 190. The next step is to address the gaps in our existing laws and work on strategies on how to encourage other nations to adopt ILO C190, especially in countries where Filipino OFWs find their employment. Preferably, the Philippine government should undertake bilateral labor agreements that incorporate the sense of C190 with host countries that accept our OFWs. Together, we can build a future where every individual can work free from the fear of violence or harassment, fostering a more just and equitable global workforce” concludes Corral.

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