DOLE: Nearly 600K regularized since 2016

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    CLOSE to 600,000 workers previously employed as contractual are now enjoying regular jobs, according to the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).

    In a press conference, DOLE Secretary Silvestre Bello III said 580,539 workers have been regularized under the present administration.

    “A total of 580,539 workers were regularized since we started our campaign against illegal contractualization in 2016,” said Bello.

    He said the development comes as part of the continuing labor inspections of business establishments.

    Bello said that as of the latest count, DOLE has inspected over 219,141 establishments covering around 13.69 million workers.

    But the Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP) said the number of regularized workers remains small as compared to the campaign promise of President Duterte, who vowed to put an end to contractualization.

    “If this number is indeed true, this is just a drop in the bucket as there are 9 million contractual workers in the country,” TUCP Vice President Louie Corral said.

    “We want to remind the President of this unmet presidential promise to end ‘endo,’” he added.

    The labor leader said this is aside from the fact that they have doubts as to the veracity of the numbers reported by DOLE.

    “Although we welcome the ‘good news’, there has to be some verification… Otherwise, the ‘good news’ is intellectually deceptive,” said Corral.

    He also urged DOLE to strictly enforce Executive Order No. 51-2018 as well as the Department Order No. 174-2017, both of which are dealing with the policy on security of tenure and contracting of jobs.

    “This is something that we hope DOLE will address thru stricter and more rigorous enforcement of EO 51 and DO 174,” said Corral.