Health, science workers set protests over Magna Carta benefits
Ghio Ong, Helen Flores (The Philippine Star) - January 31, 2016 - 9:00am

MANILA, Philippines – Health and science workers yesterday warned of more protest actions against the scrapping of their Magna Carta benefits under the proposed Salary Standardization Law.

This is despite repeated assurances from the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) that the additional benefits public school teachers, health workers and science and technology personnel are getting under Republic Act 8439 would not be taken away in the SSL.

The National DOH Employees Association (NADEA) and the Philippine Weathermen Employees Association (PWEA) forged an alliance on Saturday to strengthen their position to oppose the plan scrapping Magna Carta benefits.

“The new alliance would push for the deletion of said provision specified under the SSL by staging protest and mass action on a bigger and larger scale until their demand has been granted,” PWEA president Ramon Agustin said.

“Both health and science workers have a common and firm stand to delete the specific provision under Section 20 of the SSL 2015 which is now at the bicameral committee,” he said.

The NADEA is composed of 19,000 members, all from 47 retained hospitals and 17 regional offices of the Department of Health nationwide.

Aside from NADEA and PWEA, the Philippine Public Health Association led by its president Malou Orezca has also committed to join the alliance.

Last week, employees of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration, led by PWEA, held a three-day protest action against the removal of their benefits provided under RA 8439 or the Magna Carta for science and technology workers.

Instead of a salary increase, 99 percent of Department of Science and Technology (DOST) personnel will get a pay cut in the first year of implementation of the proposed SSL owing to a provision that threatens to repeal all benefits for scientists, engineers, researchers and other S&T personnel, Agustin said.

DEPARTMENT OF BUDGET AND MANAGEMENT DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH DEPARTMENT OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY EMPLOYEES ASSOCIATION GEOPHYSICAL AND ASTRONOMICAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION MAGNA CARTA MALOU OREZCA PHILIPPINE ATMOSPHERIC PHILIPPINE PUBLIC HEALTH ASSOCIATION PHILIPPINE WEATHERMEN EMPLOYEES ASSOCIATION RAMON AGUSTIN
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