Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Ang Tipo ng Manggagawang Chief Justice ay Pro-Labor

Press Statement
February 7, 2012
Gerry Rivera
PALEA President

We join the call for people to become active stakeholders not just passive spectators in the ongoing impeachment trial. In particular we appeal to our fellow workers to raise their voices and vote with their feet as to what standards should a Chief Justice be held to.

We deserve a Chief Justice of a higher moral and professional caliber. Not a Chief Justice who can be bought by the second-richest Filipino. Not a Supreme Court that will recall a ruling in favor of the 1,800 flight attendants who were illegally dismissed due to a mere letter from Philippine Airlines lawyer Estelito Mendoza.

Workers need a speedy resolution of cases instead of thousands of labor cases remaining trapped in the backlog of the Supreme Court since crooked capitalists know that the wheels of justice grind ever so slowly for those without money and influence. Justice delayed is truly justice denied for workers.

Workers want a pro-labor Chief Justice. Someone who will put flesh to the Constitutional proviso that workers shall enjoy full protection.  A Chief Justice who will make real the dictum that those who have less in life shall have more in law. Ang tipo ng manggagawang Chief Justice ay kakampi ng maliliit hindi kakuntsaba ng mayayaman.

But a Chief Justice is only one person who can do so much. Even a cleansing of the entire judiciary cannot liberate the oppressed. Thus we demand fundamental reforms in our society.

Workers want not just the prosecution of Gloria Arroyo and her minions but the cleansing of all corrupt officials in the bureaucracy and further substantial changes in the political and economic system. In the face of the ongoing impeachment trial of the Chief Justice, workers demand “Reforms beyond Gloria and Corona.”

Without thoroughgoing reforms then the purging of Gloria’s followers would just pave the way for the embedding of PNoy’s own cronies in government. We want to believe that the prosecution of Gloria and her minions is the start of real reforms. But without any signs of fundamental changes then such is mere wishful thinking.

We want to see the prosecution not just of a corrupt Chief Justice but the purging of labor dealers in the DOLE and NLRC. We call not just for imprisonment of an illegitimate president but the punishment of killers of labor leaders.

We demand a change in the government’s labor policy so that regular jobs are protected, contractualization is stopped, wages are not frozen, and the freedoms to organize and bargain are guaranteed.

We call for a reversal of the neoliberal economic model that has led to the collapse of our domestic industry and agriculture. Instead of labor exported abroad, jobs must be generated in the country through national industrialization, land reform and agricultural modernization.

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