P100 NCR wage hike petition dismissed


THE WAGE BOARD has dismissed the petition of two labor groups seeking a P100 across-the-board wage increase for private sector workers in the National Capital Region (NCR).

In a resolution dated May 4, the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board (RTWPB) – NCR said it has no jurisdiction to act on the petition filed by labor group Unyon ng mga Manggagawa sa Agrikultura (UMA) and progressive party-list Anakpawis for a P100 “emergency wage relief” across-the-board increase in minimum wages.

“The grant of an across-the-board minimum wage increase does not fall within the jurisdiction of the (RTWPB). It is limited to granting regional wage increases to employees earning the statutory minimum wage rates based on the standards/criteria established by law,” the wage board said in the resolution.

UMA and Anakpawis in April filed the wage hike petition, citing the rising inflation rate and higher prices of basic goods, as well as elevated unemployment and underemployment rates amid the pandemic.

The wage board in late March dismissed a similar petition filed by Defend Job Philippines.

“We are disheartened [by the] dismissal of Defend Job Philippines’ P100 emergency daily wage subsidy for technical reasons,” UMA told BusinessWorld in a Facebook messenger chat. “It only shows their bias against labor and more in favor of capital as they do not or don’t want to see the real situation of workers on the ground.”

Citing Republic Act No. 6727 or the Wage Rationalization Act of 1989, the board said it “continuously reviews and assesses the socioeconomic conditions in NCR taking into consideration the impact of the prolonged quarantine and health protocols, state of business activities including closures and retrenchments, regional employment situation and supply and price of basic commodities, among other caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.” — K.A.T. Atienza