Monday, January 13, 2014

BPO workers protest illegal closure

Press Release
January 13, 2014
Inter-Call Center Association of Workers (ICCAW)

Some one hundred employees of a BPO company in Cebu City held a mass action at their office building today in protest at illegal closure and non-payment of salaries. Workers of Leadamorphosis picketed the Dakay Building along Escario St. in downtown Cebu before trooping to the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) to file cases against management.

“Leadamorphosis management took away the joy from Christmas and the hope for the new year. Fly-by-night BPO companies like Leadamorphosis are a scourge on young workers and breadwinners,” asserted Marnick Unabia, one of some 120 affected employees.

Leadamporphosis workers only received 30% of their wages due for December 15 to 31, 2013 while none of the mandatory deductions for the last quarter of last year have been remitted. Leadamorphosis also did not submit any required notices with DOLE for bankruptcy, insolvency, redundancy or closure before abruptly shutting down last January 8.

The Leadamorphosis workers are expecting to hold a dialogue with DOLE Region 7 officials for the resolution of their grievances after the formal filing of complaints. Meanwhile their call for Leadamorphosis management to meet with them has fallen on deaf ears. They have been on vigil outside their office since last Friday to stop management from running away with company assets.

Rosie Hong of the Inter-Call Center Association of Workers (ICCAW) criticized DOLE for its inability to require BPO companies to put up cash bonds to defray employees for their money claims. ICCAW is an industry-wide association of BPO workers and has a chapter among Leadamorphosis employees. “In the parlance of the BPO industry, the DOLE is a bottom performer for failing to meet its metrics,” Hong claimed.

The DOLE was supposed to compel BPO companies to put up cash bonds equivalent to one month of salaries and benefits of its total workforce. The bond requirement was proposed at the height of the hasty shutdown of another the Cebu City-based BPO company called Direct Access that left some 600 employees with unpaid wages, commissions, overtime pay and separation benefits.

“The DOLE has been found sleeping once more on the job. Where can Leadamorphosis workers now get their unpaid wages and unremitted deductions in the absence of a bond? Does the DOLE want a dozen more BPO companies to run away from its obligations to thousands of workers before it acts on its responsibilities?,” Hong added.

Leadamarphosis handles voice and non-voice outbound calls for US clients. The company was formerly called Vector whose corporate officers still comprise Leadamorphosis. In June of 2013 it merged with another BPO company called Sasnet which handled non-voice marketing for home security gadgets.

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