September 6, 2011
The Philippine Airlines Employees’ Association (PALEA) today assailed the terms and conditions of employment being offered at service providers to laidoff Philippine Airlines (PAL) employees. “The cat is now out of the bag. Attached to the termination notices being sent out by PAL are the employment contracts at service providers. It reveals the dagdag-bawas offer to outsourced workers—less wages and benefits but more working hours,” stated Gerry Rivera, PALEA president and vice chair of the Partido ng Manggagawa.
Rivera said that most PAL employees to be terminated are being offered a monthly wage of just PhP 1111.50 for working eight hours a day for six days a week. In comparison he declared that as PAL workers they work 7 ½ a day for five days a week as stipulated in the collective bargaining agreement. “Outsourced employees will be working longer hours but be receiving smaller pay. Who benefits from such sacrifice by PAL workers? Lucio Tan who as the second richest Filipino may just jump to being number one,” Rivera asserted.
Moreover, from regular employees of PAL, the outsourced workers will become contractual workers at the service providers. “PAL employees who have been working for 10, 20 or 30 years will be downgraded to probationary status for six months and after which he or she can simply be terminated after training other younger workers at the service providers,” Rivera claimed.
PALEA plans to escalate its campaign against the planned outsourcing and contractualization this week as PAL management’s September 9 deadline for workers to avail of separation package nears. Tomorrow PALEA will hold a prayer protest in the morning at the Terminal 2 chapel and then a noise barrage in the afternoon at the corner of
Meanwhile on Thursday big labor groups and church institutions such as the CBCP-National Secretariat for Social Action will hold a press conference in support of PALEA. Then on Saturday PALEA will hold a “family day” where spouses and children of PAL employees can express and voice their sentiments on the planned layoff and outsourcing.
“PAL already earned a net profit of USD 72.5 million last fiscal year apart from paying its loans obligation of USD 46.5 million in 2010. Apparently PhP 5 billion in income in not enough for Lucio Tan that he has to depress the wages and working conditions of PAL workers by turning them into contractual workers at service providers,” Rivera added.