Friday, May 27, 2016
Kudos to the workers of garments factory Faremo International Inc. in the Cavite EPZA for winning their remaining demands and concluding a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) after days of protests and the threat of a strike.
"What we failed to achieve in more than three months of bargaining at the table, we won with the help of three days of mass protests by union members who wore red ribbons at work to express their fervent demand for a decent CBA and were determined to go on strike if necessary," explained Jessel Autida, president of the Faremo labor union.
He added that "Salamat sa pagkakaisa at pagkilos ng mga manggagawa ng Faremo, member man ng unyon o hindi. We owe this victory to their unity and action."
The Faremo workers won their demand for retirement pay, paid leaves and other monetary benefits. These issues were previously unresolved and caused the deadlock in the CBA negotiations.
Last Monday the Faremo union filed a notice of strike due to CBA deadlock and workers also started tying red ribbons in their shirts or around their heads. The ribbon protest continued until last Wednesday when the DOLE/NCMB called for a factory level mediation hearing to resolve the strike threat.
While the negotiations proceeded, hundreds of workers who clocked out of work stayed just outside the factory gate to show support for the union panel. The conclusion of the CBA negotiations was met with joy by the Faremo workers. The notice of strike has been withdrawn by the union while the draft CBA will next be submitted for formal ratification by the union members.
Faremo is a subsidiary of the Korean multinational Hansoll and produces for global garments brands Gap, JC Penney and Kohl's. Aside from the Philippines, Hansoll has factories in Indonesia, Cambodia, Vietnam, Guatemala and Nicaragua.
May 27, 2016
Thursday, May 26, 2016
To jumpstart the campaign against endo or contractualization at the Philippines Airlines (PAL), the union Philippine Airlines Employees’ Association (PALEA) picketed the company’s Inflight Center (IFC) near the NAIA Terminal 2. The renewed actions are spurred on by the promise of incoming President Rodrigo Duterte to end endo.
Last year, just before Duterte run for president, he met leaders of PALEA in Davao and expressed his opposition to contractualization. PALEA and the militant group Partido Manggagawa (PM) are now asking the President elect to make good on his promise to stop contractualization.
Some 100 PALEA members held a rally on the road leading to the Terminal 2 for about one hour and then marched on to the PAL Nichols office to continue the protest until noon. Later in the afternoon, PALEA officers attended at mediation hearing at the National Conciliation and Mediation Board regarding the pending labor dispute with PAL.
Bong Palad, PALEA national secretary said that “PALEA is calling on PAL to comply with the settlement agreement they offered to PALEA and forged by the two parties in 2013. Specifically PALEA demands the implementation of the re-employment provision in the agreement.”
In September 2011, some 2,600 PAL regular workers were terminated and outsourced to become agency workers. After a two-year fight, PALEA and PAL forged a deal to settle the labor dispute of 2011 yet some 600 retrenched members have not been re-employed as provided for in the agreement.
PM also challenged on Duterte to prove that “change is coming” by rectifying the injustice committed by outgoing president Benigno Aquino who approved the PAL outsourcing scheme and later threatened an economic sabotage case against PALEA for launching a protest that paralyzed flights.
PM chair Rene Magtubo argued that “A clear and determined path to end endo will be set if the contractualization scheme and scam at PAL is reversed. by implementation of the settlement agreement with PALEA.”
Photos of the rally can be accessed at https://www.facebook.com/jerry.bagsic/posts/1133381940025534
May 26, 2016
Wednesday, May 25, 2016
May 25, 2016
Contact Bong Palad @ 09165740596
Start of renewed campaign to end endo:
PALEA to picket PAL Inflight Center tom
WHAT: In the picket, PALEA will demand the reinstatement of regular workers and implementation of settlement agreement
WHEN: Tomorrow, May 26 (Thursday), 10:00 a.m.
WHERE: PAL Inflight Center, near NAIA Terminal 2
DETAILS: To jumpstart the campaign against endo or contractualization at the Philippines Airlines (PAL), the union Philippine Airlines Employees’ Association (PALEA) will picket PAL’s Inflight Center. The renewed actions are spurred on by the promise of incoming President Rodrigo Duterte to end endo.
Last year, just before Duterte run for president, he met leaders of PALEA in Davao and expressed his opposition to contractualization. PALEA and the militant group Partido Manggagawa are now asking the president elect to make good on his promise to stop contractualization at PAL and other companies.
PALEA is calling on PAL to implement the settlement agreement forged in 2013 and re-employ some 600 workers terminated in 2011. In September 2011, some 2,600 PAL regular workers were terminated and outsourced to become agency workers. After a two-year fight, PALEA and PAL forged a deal to settle the labor dispute of 2011 yet some 600 retrenched members have not been re-employed as provided for in the agreement.
Tuesday, May 24, 2016
Workers of the biggest garments factory at the country’s largest export zone are preparing to go on strike to break a deadlock in collective bargaining negotiations. The union of workers at Faremo International Inc. in the Cavite ecozone filed a notice of strike yesterday after bargaining talks remained inconclusive last Friday.
“Workers are asking for just a little more than 5% of the net profit on a per capita basis of Faremo’s mother company yet the company refuses to budge on our just demands. The union has patiently negotiated for the last four months but management has been intransigent. It has even showed bad faith in bargaining for withdrawing a previously agreed upon offer of paid leaves,” explained Jessel Autida, union president of the Faremo International Inc. Workers Association.
Provisions on retirement pay, paid leaves and other monetary benefits remain pending at the bargaining table. On Wednesday, the Department of Labor and Employment is calling a mediation hearing in a bid to resolve the bargaining dispute and avert a strike.
Despite years on the job, almost all workers at Faremo are paid just the regional minimum wage of P315 plus P25.50 in allowances. A handful of so-called pioneer workers are paid wages P1 higher than the minimum. Workplace grievances like low pay impelled the formation of a union at Faremo last year.
“Management keeps on saying that Faremo was in the red for the past several years and only showed a small profit last year. The union believes this is simply due to the magic of transfer pricing. Faremo sells its products at low prices to its mother company Hansoll and thus the profit is reflected in the latter not the former,” Autida insisted.
In its website, Hansoll proclaims that it has revenues of USD 1.23 billion and a target net profit of 5% on sales by year 2017.
There are more than a thousand workers at Faremo, some 800 of whom are regular and represented by the union. Faremo is a subsidiary of the Korean multinational Hansoll and exports to the US and Europe for global garments brands.
Yesterday Faremo workers started wearing red ribbons to symbolize their demand for a decent collective bargaining agreement. More mass actions are planned to highlight the plight of workers at Faremo.
May 24, 2016
Monday, May 23, 2016
The militant Partido Manggagawa (PM) is urging incoming President Rodrigo Duterte to set off his anti-‘endo’ campaign to a good start by rectifying a grave injustice committed by outgoing President BS Aquino against the Filipino workers.
According to PM Chairman Renato Magtubo, that injustice -- a mistake known to all -- was President Aquino's cold-blooded approval of PAL’s outsourcing program in 2011.
The program, the labor leader said, altered from regular to contractual the employment status of 2,600 PAL employees.
Members of the Philippine Airlines Employees Association (PALEA), for more than two years, stood firm in opposing the program by building and sustaining a massive protest camp at PAL’s In-Flight Center near the Terminal 2. The campaign call, “Ang laban ng PALEA ay laban ng lahat,” had since then become the battle cry of organized labor against the policy of contractualization.
In September 2013, the union and the PAL management entered into a Settlement Agreement (SA) which provides for a compensation and re-employment package for some 600 members of PALEA who remained opposed to the outsourcing program. PAL has not fully complied with the agreement particularly on PALEA 600 re-employment as regular workers.
“Mr. President, this injustice does not require three or six months to fix and rectify. It is simply an implementation of a binding agreement between the union and the management which you were made aware of during a meeting with PALEA officers before you finally decided to run as President,” said Magtubo.
Added Magtubo: “Once justice is served to the PALEA 600, a clear direction is presumed to have been set for a serious anti-endo campaign of the new administration. We do expect a non business-as-usual approach to this issue.”
Ending endo or the industry practice of hiring workers on contractual basis was one of the main platforms of President-elect Rody Duterte. The policy is seen as a plague that perpetuates the problem of poverty and inequality in the country as it undermines workers’ right to decent work and life of dignity.
The labor group, however, is worried that the 8-point economic agenda of the President didn’t set out a “bagong daan” framework to indicate a new era or a new beginning.
Meanwhile, PM said it is also supportive of Duterte’s plan to open peace talks with the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) as well as with other revolutionary forces in the country.
“Ending the people’s war will not necessarily mean the ultimate settlement of class conflicts in the country. That won’t happen in the next six years or more under capitalism and the system of elite rule. But aiming for momentary or long-term peace based on social justice is a better agenda than prolonging the war to an indefinite conclusion,” said Magtubo.
Duterte’s peace charm with CPP is coupled with a surprising offer of four cabinet positions to its nominees for DOLE, DAR, DSWD and DENR.
23 May 2016