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Hotline launched for COVID-19-related job terminations, labor complaints

Ratziel San Juan - Philstar.com
Hotline launched for COVID-19-related job terminations, labor complaints
A group of workers
The STAR / Michael Varcas

MANILA, Philippines — A local labor group on Wednesday launched a hotline open daily between 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. where workers can anonymously report labor issues related to the outbreak of Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19).

As part of its "COVID-19 Labor Monitor" campaign, Defend Jobs Philippines is gathering labor concerns such as unlawful work terminations and plant shutdowns apparently linked to COVID-19.

Legal assistance will be offered to complainants with legal queries, a representative of the group told Philstar.com.

“As part of our service for Filipino workers in this time of state of national public health emergency, we must ensure that none of our labor force will be taken for granted by their employers both in the private and public sector in regards with their security of their employment, jobs and livelihoods,” Defend Jobs Philippines spokesperson Thadeus Ifurung said in a Wednesday release.

The labor group warned employers and the government to uphold the law since it is carefully tracking labor violations during the COVID-19 outbreak.

It also assured workers that the identities of complainants will be protected and would remain strictly confidential.

“Under our Labor Code, lay-offs and closures of workplaces require proper legal grounds and must ensure the best interests of our workers. Amid threats of massive terminations of thousands of workforces nationwide due to COVID-19, it is high time for us to extend our support and concern for our working people,” Ifurung said.

“No livelihood and source of income of our workforce must be victimized by COVID-19. It is the government’s responsibility to ensure and maintain the lifeline of our workers especially in this kind of situation.”

RELATED: PAL layoff due to 'corporate greed,' not COVID-19 — labor group

The labor leader also previously said that government and private employers alike should "sincerely and religiously implement" the Occupational Safety and Health Act (Republic Act 11058) in order to safeguard the health of Filipino workers.

The said law mandates every employer, contractor, subcontractor and other manager to keep their workers free from hazardous conditions, informed about present hazards, the right to refuse unsafe work and the provision of personal protective equipment among other guaranteed labor rights.

RELATED: Labor groups urges DOH, DOLE to ensure health workers' safety amid quarantine

The hotline numbers are 82775615 (for Metro Manila) and +63282775615 (for outside Metro Manila).

Workers may also contact Defend Jobs Philippines through their Facebook and Twitter accounts.

2019-NCOV

CORONAVIRUS DISEASE 2019

COVID-19

DEFEND JOBS PHILIPPINES

LABOR

LABOR ISSUES

NOVEL CORONAVIRUS

PHILIPPINES LABOR ISSUES

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