Labor group unimpressed, tells Presidentiables to ‘Walk the Talk’ on contractualization

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MILITANT labor group challenged all candidates vying for the presidency to regularize their employees now and not simply pledge to act on contractualization only after an electoral victory in the May national elections after they unanimously expressed that they plan to abolish the contractual work scheme in the PiliPinas Debates.

“All politicians in a televised debate, with only less than two weeks in the campaign will promise heaven on earth to edge out their rivals but since all of them has spoken against contractualization, the next best thing is for them to walk the talk and begin with their own companies and those they have investments in,” said Leody de Guzman, chairperson of Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP) and also partylist nominee.

Though the labor leader was elated that the contractualization was raised in the debate, he maintained that he was generally unimpressed and skeptical with the candidates’ answers. “If they truly disapprove of contractualization and its direct impact to the widening income inequality in the country then it would be admirable for them to practice what they preach”.

De Guzman claimed that he expected the outcome of the debate and the presidentiables to be reeking in desperation. “They may speak all they want about the evils of contractualization but are only negating each other. Worse, words without actions will only reinforce their Trapo (traditional politician) image”.

“The labor sector like all Filipinos has grown weary of electoral promises for their failure to implement them in once seated. President Aquino’s promise to work for the enactment of the Freedom of Information bill in 2010 is still fresh in our memory. To prevent another failed promise we urge them to prove their sincerity and submit themselves to a four-way test now and not wait for their inauguration”.

De Guzman elaborated that in order to be worthy of the votes of the forty-one million labor workforce candidates must 1) regularize their casual employees; 2) divest from companies who employ contractual labor; 3) disengage from their campaign financiers who employ thousands of temps, and 4) cease endorsing candidates known to be in the business of sub-contracting labor.

He as well took a swipe at candidates who have long been in government service but only recently have taken a position against detested work scheme and yet have the gall to ask the ranks organized labor for its votes when they have done nothing during their incumbency.

“With media hounding them every day and scrutinizing their every statement, candidates are becoming even more desperate that they simply utter promises even if it does not reflect with their track record in public office,” he explained.

The BMP vowed to vigorously fight tooth and nail for the abolition of contractual employment whoever is anointed by the people next month.

The group together with Sanlakas partylist and other allies will be holding a “Workers Challenge” on May 1, International Labor Day were they shall invite candidates to listen to the day to day problems besetting the country’s poor. They expect more than ten thousand people from various sectors to attend and march to Mendiola Bridge.

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