PH Senator Filed For Bill Requiring 14th Month Pay in Private Sectors
Senate President Tito Sotto passed a Bill requiring private employers to pay their employees 14th month pay in addition to the 13th month pay mandated by law.
In the current system, all employers both private and public, are required to pay an additional 13th month pay to workers regardless of their employment status; full-time, part-time or contractual employees. The amount is equivalent to one month basic salary earned by the employee. For some companies, they divide the amount into two and distribute twice a year, also called mid-year and year-end bonuses.
With the current inflation rate, ordinary Filipinos bear the brunt of rising prices of basic commodities. The pay rise can’t keep up with the price hikes. So will the bill be beneficial or not? Who will benefit from it?
As for the employees, it is definitely welcome as to compensate to the burden of price increases. Especially to single-income families, a measly 5 to 10% annual salary increase won’t make much difference. Many workers wait for the end of the year to be able to breathe a little bit easier because it’s the only time they can receive twice the amount of their monthly income. However, long before they receive it, the money has been loaned out.
As for businesses, small and medium enterprises might suffer a lot. Foreign investors choose the Philippines because of the relatively low labor cost and expenses, but with such policies, it will surely put some businesses at risk. It is true that happy employees tend to be more productive, but the thing is, small businesses might close altogether leaving a handful of laborers in the job hunters’ pool.
It may be true that fringe benefits of Filipino workers aren’t as lucrative as in other countries, but with the rate of unemployment, can we handle more people losing jobs?
It may not be just the monetary compensation that the government should look into. More than that, the working environment and condition should be prioritized. Also, labor policies should be checked whether they are fully and properly implemented, such as proper working hours, minimum wages and compensations as well as the factors that enable people to balance work and life. Transportation in the Metro make people kill time spent on commuting rather than being productive. There were already some bills on alternative working styles and the government should start looking at other ways beneficial for both employers and employees.
bear the brunt of (something bad): to receive the worst part of something bad
measly: very small and disappointing in size, quantity, or value
fringe benefit: an additional benefit supplementing an employee’s salary.
lucrative: a job or activity that is lucrative lets you earn a lot of money