PLDT continues to violate labor laws – group

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Employees of the Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. (PLDT) claimed that the company continues to violate the Department of Labor and Employment’s (DOLE) guidelines on work contracting and sub-contracting despite its assurances that it will comply with labor laws.

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“While PLDT declares that it will continue to fully cooperate with the DOLE, the resolution has not been implemented yet it announced the outsourcing of its IT (information technology) services which is utterly illegal,” the PLDT rank and file union, the Manggagawa sa Komunikasyon ng Pilipinas (MKP), said.

“This is so, not only because IT services is necessary and desirable to PLDT’s business but also because its IT services is manned by regular employees. It is downright illegal to outsource jobs of regular employees,” said MKP president Arthur Castillo.

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello 3rd earlier tagged PLDT as one of the top violators of labor laws after the firm was subjected to a Special Assessment/Visit Establishment (SAVE), DOLE’s mechanism to assess, validate and verify compliance with labor laws and their contractors/sub-contractors.

Bello said the violations were found among its sub-contractors, majority of which are either not registered or with expired registration.

The Labor chief has ordered the PLDT to regularize some 10,000 workers under contracting and sub-contracting arrangements but are performing jobs that are directly related to the firm’s business.

MKP said the DOLE audit team found that there were sales personnel being paid only P150 a day, way below the daily minimum wage of P493 in Metro Manila.

Some workers were also denied their 13th month pay, service incentive leave, sick leave and paternity leave.

Department Order (DO) 174 prohibits labor-only contracting, farming of work through “cabo”, contracting out of job or work through an in-house agency or in-house cooperative that supplies workers to the principal; contracting out of a job by reason of a strike or lockout and contracting out of a job or work being performed by union members. It also prohibits contractors and subcontractors from requiring their employees to perform functions being performed by regular employees and the repeated hiring of employees under an employment contract of short duration.

The PLDT, through its corporate secretary Ma. Lourdes Rausa-Chan, said that it has not received any order from the DOLE other than document requests in relation to its audit on the firm’s compliance with labor laws.

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