DoLE to seek priority status for bill on security of tenure penalizing ‘endo’

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THE Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE) said it will seek the certification of the Security of Tenure Bill as a legislative priority.

During a briefing on Tuesday, Secretary Silvestre H. Bello said DoLE is endorsing the bill and has proposed to the Legislative-Executive Development Advisory Council (LEDAC) to certify it as urgent.

He added that during a pre-LEDAC meeting, he pushed for the inclusion of the bill as part of the legislative bodies’ main agenda.

“The decision yesterday during the pre-LEDAC meeting is that we will move to include it in agenda of LEDAC proper,” Mr. Bello said.

In LEDAC’s Common Legislative Agenda (CLA) for the 17th Congress, the bill is considered a priority by the administration but it has yet to be certified as urgent.

The bill, known as Senate Bill 1826, was sponsored by Committee on Labor, Employment and Human Resources Development Chair Joel J. Villanueva.

Despite endorsing SB 1826. Mr. Bello said that he still worries about how it can be implemented.

“You may have the best legislation on the security of tenure but if there’s no capability to implement it, it would be a waste,” he said.

Employers Confederation of the Philippines (ECOP) President Donald G. Dee said by phone on Monday, “We support the bill in general but there are some provisions we have some reservations on.”

Mr. Bello said that the business sector’s reservations center on the P5 million fine for businesses found to be engaged in labor-only contracting activity.

“They don’t like the penalty of P5 million. We think it’s too low,” he said.

The bill also authorizes the DoLE to preventively or permanently shut down operations of labor-only contractors. — Gillian M. Cortez