Wednesday, April 15, 2020

P50B subsidy for SME workers is too little, too complicated

DOLE: 250,000 workers to get aid amid COVID-19 quarantine

The labor group Partido Manggagawa (PM) asserted that the P50 billion subsidy for workers in the SME sector is “too little, too complicated.” Rene Magtubo, PM national chair, proposed instead a P10,000 wage subsidy to all wage and salaried workers.

He added that “The wage subsidy to SME workers suffers from the same problems as the social amelioration program (SAP) and covid-19 adjustment measures program (CAMP)—the amount of aid are not enough and all are difficult to implement since targeted and discriminatory.”

“A universal basic income for all Filipinos in needed to mitigate the impact of the pandemic. This is the spirit behind the P10K subsidy for all formal workers,” Magtubo explained.

He insisted that “The labor coalition Nagkaisa and the rest of the labor movement is not alone in asking for this reasonable demand. The Pope Francis in his Easter message called on governments for this. Even solons such as Rep. Joey Salceda has elaborated on the need for a universal system since targeted delivery of aid suffers from implementation issues which we have all seen.”

PM pointed out to the fact that one month into the community quarantine in Metro Manila and Luzon, a lot workers that temporarily loss their jobs are still without aid from the government or their employers.

“Even the DOLE admits that not all employers have applied for CAMP since some are afraid of being cited for labor standards violations that will be exposed in their payroll. Of those that have applied, large companies are pending since SME’s are the priority. As for SAP, we all know that LGU’s are complaining that the quota given by the national government falls short of the number of poor beneficiaries. Universal not targeted aid. Ayudang sapat para sa lahat. Kailangan pa bang i-memorize ito,” Magtubo explained.

April 15, 2020

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