HOUSE LEGISLATORS from the Makabayan bloc urged President Rodrigo R. Duterte to approve a P10,000 gratuity for government contractual workers for the holidays.

The bloc filed House Resolution 2391 for the benefit of job order (JO) and contract of service (COS) government workers, saying these categories of employees need help with basic expenses.

“While regularizing JO and COS workers would be the best Christmas gift, granting gratuity pay during this time of pandemic and high inflation rate is the very least the government can provide to show their appreciation,” they said in the resolution.

Inflation was 4.6% in October, bringing the 10-month average to 4.5%. The rate exceeds the 2-4% target band of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas for the year.

The Makabayan bloc cited the August 2021 Inventory of Government Human Resources, which tallied 582,378 JO and COS workers, comprising 25% of total government personnel.

Contractual government workers do not enjoy benefits given to regular employees such as bonuses during the middle and end of the year.

“In the face of lack of regular personnel, (contractual workers) are important in the provision of government services,” the Makabayan bloc said. — Russell Louis C. Ku