25,000 workers to join Labor Day protest

MANILA Philippines Around 25,000 workers are expected to join the Labor Day parade from Espaaa to Mendiola in Manila on Labor Day Friday.

A total of 49 labor groups and workers’ organizations in private and public sectors from Nagkaisa labor coalition will assemble at Welcome Rotonda, Espaaa and march toward Chino Roces bridge in Mendiola where they will hold a protest assembly.

“We are reminded of the 40 million other disenfranchised workers … For them as the majority of Filipinos, the message to our president: This is just not acceptable, we can do better,” labor group TUCP-Nagkaisa Vice President Gerard Seno said.

Last Monday, labor groups abandoned their plans to meet with President Benigno Aquino III in an annual breakfast dialogue following his failure to deliver the workable and time bound eight-point policy agenda proposed by the group in 2012.

Included in proposal are the streamlining of contractual job scheme, increasing the wages of private employees and government workers, lowering cost of electricity and ensure reliability of supply, implementing the agro-industrial plan to create stable jobs, and allowing public sector workers to form unions.

Nagkaisa also calls for expanding of tax exemptions, reforming the wage-setting mechanism, passing the Freedom of Information bill, and provision of in-city relocation for informal settler families living in danger areas.

“The eight policy issues have been painstakingly tackled and validated by bilateral technical working groups … What the president must do is approve and implement them or veto it altogether but he must not keep these groups waiting,” Seno said.