The Employers Confederation of the Philippines said Monday it will support the Labor Department’s new order banning labor-only contracting and end-of-contract or ‘endo’ scheme.
Ecop chairman Edgardo Lacson said his group was hoping the recently-signed Department Order 174 would create a positive synergy between employer’s profitability and the employees’ right to proper compensation.
“We will follow the law. We do not question the process. It has undergone almost nine months of tripartite meetings,” he said.
The order signed by Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III banned labor-only contracting and prohibited “endo” or the end of contract scheme but regulated lawful contractual arrangements.
Lacson said while the new department order was more restrictive than the previous law, “employers will try to comply with the law.”
“We will also consult with policy makers if there are corners workable where employers maybe allowed some form of respite,” Lacson said.
He said the order had several “vague provisions” that needed clarification such as the definition of “real jobs that will be affected.”
“We will give it six months to one year compliance but if and when the impact will be untenable to business, if businesses start to hurt, we have to bail out,” said Lacson.
Ecop president Sergio Ortiz-Luiz said the order could aggravate the unemployment problem in the Philippines.
The January 2017 Labor Force Survey showed that unemployment rate rose to 6.6 percent in January 2017 from 5.7 percent in January 2016, as more than a million jobs were lost over the past 12 months.
Ortiz-Luiz said the 58,000 workers who were upgraded as regulars employees did not add to the workforce. He said no added employment was announced.
“In fact, the aggravating result of all of these [new labor order and mine closures] is that unemployment will certainly rise. With what the mining sector is going through, who will give the displaced workers jobs. Certainly not the DENR [Department of Environment and Natural Resources,” Ortiz-Luis said.