Gov’t told to end its own ‘endo’ scheme
While the Senate is still debating a bill to stop “endo” (end-of-contract labor scheme), or short-term labor-contracting in the private sector, Sen. Joel Villanueva wants the government to end “contractualization” that is happening in its own backyard.
“How can we expect the private sector to follow suit if the government itself implements labor contractualization?” the chair of the Senate labor committee lamented in a statement on Wednesday.
Villanueva said the executive branch should uphold its commitment to regularize more than 600,000 contractual employees, called “contract-of-service” (COS) and “job order” (JO) workers, in the government.
Based on 2017 data from the Civil Service Commission, some 660,390 out of the 2.4 million government workers are COS or JO workers.
In 2016, there were more than 595,000 contractuals in the public sector.
‘Peace of mind’
“Let us attract the best and the brightest workers in the government by giving the peace of mind they deserve in recognition of their contribution to our society, be it local- or national-level public service,’’ Villanueva said.
The senator issued the statement after the Department of Budget and Management announced that government agencies were now allowed to hire new COS and JO workers and renew existing contracts until Dec. 31, 2020.
Also, under Joint Circular No. 1, existing qualified COS and JO workers shall be considered for appointment to vacant positions in the agencies, subject to all civil service rules.
But Villanueva said the executive could do much more than just give two-year job extension to contractual workers.
“Let us institutionalize the right to security of tenure of all casual and contractual employees of the government who have long been serving in the public sector,’’ he said.
Senators are still deliberating Senate Bill No. 1826, or the proposed Security of Tenure Act, which has been certified as a priority measure by President Rodrigo Duterte.
The bill, which proposes social protection for workers, is seen to finally put an end to abusive work schemes like “endo” in the private sector.
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