Monday, June 22, 2009

Appeal for Solidarity for Paul Yu Workers Struggle

The workers of Paul-Yu Phils. Corp., a factory in Mactan Export Processing Zone (MEPZ) II in Lapu-Lapu City producing lamp shades for the export and local market, have been on a week of work stoppage in support of seven suspended leaders of their workers association. The five days of work stoppage has partially paralyzed the operations of the company as around 400 workers have participated while only a hundred workers were left working.

The suspension of seven leaders of the Paul Yu workers are in retaliation for the protest action last May 8 and the filing of a case last May 21 against management’s numerous unfair labor practices. The preventive suspension on the seven was slapped by management supposedly for an “illegal strike” conducted last May 8.

Paul Yu management is turning the tables on the workers for it is the company that is guilty of illegal acts and unfair labor practice which is spelled out in the case the workers filed last May 21 at the Labor Department. Among these infractions is the three-day workweek implemented since December that lacks proper documentation and due notice with the Labor Department. Moreover, management is reducing the workdays for regular workers even as it continues to outsource 40% of its production to contractors.

The workers also found out that the AVI Amor Vil Inc., the biggest among three agencies that Paul Yu has contracted to supply workers for the factory, is not registered with the Labor Department and is thus another illegal act by management.

Among the protesting workers are agency employees who are up in arms at labor contractualization at Paul Yu. Many agency employees have worked for several years, some as long as five years, yet they remain irregulars whose contracts are renewed continuously every two months. Workers are also complaining of non-payment of holiday pay, non-remittance of social security deductions for agency workers, non-implementation of paternity leave and non-payment of break time.

The Paul Yu workers demands are:

1. Immediate lifting of the suspension on the seven leaders and no retaliatory action on workers who have participated in the protests
2. Return to the six-day workweek
3. Stop to the outsourcing of production
4. Regularization of contractual and agency workers
5. Implementation of benefits like holiday pay, paternity leave, break time, and remittance of social security deductions for agency workers

Last May 8 a protest was held to force the management to hear the workers complaints and seek redress of their grievances. The May 8 protest cannot be considered an illegal strike for management agreed to face the workers in a dialogue together with officials of the Philippine Export Zone Authority (PEZA). In the minutes of the dialogue that was duly signed by PEZA officials, it is stated that there will be no retaliatory action against workers involved in the protest.

The Paul Yu workers struggle has gained support of other MEPZ workers with members of the newly-formed union at Altamode, a garments factory also in MEPZ II, participating in the protests.

In its website (, Paul Yu claims that it was established 1978 and is one of the largest decorative home lighting and furniture manufacturers in the world with an estimated turnover in 2008 of US$ 54 million. It says that it exports to over 82 countries, including Europe, North America, South America, the Middle East, Australia, New Zealand and Japan.

The Paul Yu contact information is:

Address: 8th Fl., No. 68, Jenai Rd., Sec.4, Taipei, Taiwan 106
Telephone: 886-2-2700-3286
Fax: 886-2-2709-2314
Contact Person: Mr. Paul Yu (President)
Mr. Ken Yu (President Assistant)

The Cebu office address is:
Dr 4a 2Flr Vel Ouano Bldg
AS Fortuna cor Ms Briones Highway Mandaue City 6014 Philippines
Tel 63 323465571 Telex 63 323465571

The plant is located at: Mactan Economic Zone II, Basak, Lapu-Lapu City, Mactan, Cebu

Any letters of concern/protest should be sent to Paul Yu’s Taiwan and Cebu offices with copies furnished to the Labor Department (main and regional offices) and Export Zone Authority (main and regional offices). The following are the contact info:

Marianito D. Roque
Department of Labor and Employment
Muralla St. cor. Gen. Luna St., Intramuros
1002 Manila Philippines
527-3000 Loc. 701 up to 707 527-2121, 301-0182, 527-5523

Elias A. Cayanong
Regional Director
DOLE Region 7
2nd Floor, GMC Plaza, MJ Cuenco Avenue cor. Legaspi St. 6000 Cebu City
(032) 253-0638(032) 416-6418; 253-9521

Sansaluna A. Pinagayao
Zone Administrator
Mactan Economic Zone
Tels (032) 340-0593, (032) 340-0595
Fax (032) 340-0591

Dr. Lilia B. de Lima
Director General
Tel Nos.: 551-3432 | 551-3454 | 551-3455
Fax Nos.: 891-63-80

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