Philippines president to bare non-wage benefits package on Labor Day

Apr. 26, 2007

MANILA — President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo will bare a package of non-wage benefits but no salary increase on May 1, Labor Day, Labor Secretary Arturo Brion said Tuesday.

“President Arroyo will announce the good news on Labor Day, Brion said. Now let me announce the not-so-bad news: Many are speculating that on Labor Day we will give a new a salary increase. This Labor Day, there is not going to be any salary increase because it will be decided by the regional wage boards.”

Brion said the regional wage boards are currently deliberating the various petitions for pay increases filed by various groups like the Trade Union Congress of the Philippines, which is asking for a P75 increase.

He said the wage boards are expected to decide by July.

But even without a wage hike announcement, Brion said the benefits Arroyo will unveil will still be good news — basic commodities, food, housing, health, and a special announcement for government employees.

At the same time, Brion said he recommended that Arroyo not make April 30, Monday, a non-working holiday, saying this would be disadvantageous to both business and labor, especially for daily wage employees.

Brion said he has submitted his recommendation to the office of Executive Secretary Eduardo Ermita, who has yet to make the announcement.

Malacaang usually declares as non-working holiday the day that is sandwiched by the weekend and the official holiday to give workers a long weekend. (PIA Dispatch)

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