San Simon, Pampanga—Majority of the 42 laborers who voluntarily resigned at a steel factory here have received their unpaid salaries and wages, enough for their travel back home to Mindanao.
Most of these workers, who were hired through a manpower agency found their way to the Real Steel Corporation as laborers, the firm said in a statement Thursday.
San Simon Police chief Major Greg Santos said the stranded workers were allowed to travel back to their respective destinations in Mindanao after they were provided the necessary documents required by the coronavirus pandemic task force.
“Because these people are considered locally stranded individuals (LSIs), we have to assist them in processing their travel authority, medical and quarantine certificates while they were under the custody of the LGU,” said Santos in a phone interview.
RSC earlier said about a dozen of the workers who voluntarily left the company have been absorbed back after they appealed for reinstatement and are working again at the steel plant.
Santos said none of the former RSC workers filed criminal charges against Irwin Chua, the owner of steel plant. He said a few of them filed criminal complaints against Chinese workers at the plant for allegedly inflicting harm on them while at work.
“Kaunti na lang ang natitira sa kanila dahil karamihan ay nakakuha ng kabayaran sa kulang na sweldo at ang iba naman ay nanatili dito sa custody ng local government unit habang dinidinig ang isinampanga reklamo laban sa mga Chinese na manggagawa ng RSC,” said Santos.
A Manila-based media outfit falsely claimed that it had launched rescue operations for more than a hundred workers of the RSC, which was quickly belied by the company and the Department of Labor and Employment Regional Office 3.
“No rescue operations took place, the workers voluntarily left the company due to homesickness and not from maltreatment as earlier reported in a radio and television program in Manila,” said Santos.
DOLE3 Regional Director Maria Zenaida Angara- Campita earlier said that RSC management settled the unpaid wages of some of the 42 workers during a meeting at the DOLE office recently.
“Yung iba nakatanggap ng P18,000, some received more than P20,000, enough for their travel back to their respective places of destination,” said Campita, adding that separate claims are being processed for those who met an accident in the workplace.
Campita said no separation pay was given to the workers as they voluntarily resigned, and most of them are not qualified for such benefits since they have not met the required period of stay in the company.
The DOLE3 director said another round of meeting and negotiations between RSC and some of the former workers, apparently to settle their claims, is set on Friday, Oct. 2.
RSC management, Campita said, showed documents stating the complainants have been paid their wages even before they tendered their resignations.