Sen. Loren Legarda has reiterated her call on President Aquino to sign the kasambahay (domestic worker) bill that Congress passed before the end of 2012.
“We only need the President’s signature to make a minimum wage and other rights and privileges a reality for 1.9 million domestic workers in the country, most of whom are women,” Legarda said.
Legarda cited a report by the International Labor Organization (ILO) which showed that househelp in the Philippines were among the most overworked workers in the world.
The report said Filipino domestics toiled beyond the globally accepted statutory limit on weekly working hours which is 48.
“The oppression of household workers happens all over the world. We should take the lead and prove that reversing this situation can be done,” Legarda said.
According to the ILO report, Filipino househelp also receive meager pay, at a national average that is 43.8 percent of the income of regular workers.
“It is imperative that we treat our kasambahay as workers, not servants,” Legarda said.
Legarda was one of the principal authors of the kasambahay bill, which was ratified by both the Senate and the House of Representatives in November and has been pending in Malacañang since.
Legarda said the January ILO report entitled “Domestic Workers Across the World” showed that househelp in the Philippines worked 52 hours a week in 2010, the seventh longest work hours among 39 countries with available data.