The College Editors Guild of the Philippines (CEGP) stands with the workers of TV5 in their continuing fight for security of tenure and decent wages amid the media giant’s attacks against their rights.
On February 24, more than 100 regular employees of TV5, 98 of which were members of the TV5 Employees Union, were laid off from work without due notice as part of the network’s “organizational restructuring” to save it from further financial losses.
We denounce the TV5 management for their blatant disregard of workers rights in pursuit of colossal profits. The massive layoff violates the Labor Code which mandates issuance of a written notice 30 days prior to the retrenchment. It is also a veiled attempt to bust the union which engaged the media giant in the fight for just compensation and benefits under a fair collective bargaining agreement (CBA) almost a year ago.
But more so, we condemn the government for its consistent failure to protect workers from abusive labor practices perpetrated by big companies such as TV5. Lenient government regulations have jeopardized not only the rights of regular employees, but much more the rights—or lack thereof—of contractual workers.
Despite the Duterte government’s promise to end contractualization, the unjust labor practice remains much in place. In the media industry, workers continue to be subjected to various contractualization schemes which basically strip off the employee-employer relationship. Media workers are forced to work for irregular and longer hours without hazard pays, benefits such as SSS and PhilHealth, and more importantly, security of tenure. This, notwithstanding the fact that they compromise their health and risk their lives in doing the dirty work to come up with comprehensive reports relevant to the public.
As future media practitioners, we refuse to inherit this system. We join the workers of TV5 in their call to reinstate the dismissed workers. We stand with the workers in the media industry in their struggle against the unjust labor practices implemented by various media networks.
We are one with the thousands of workers in the country incessantly exploited by capitalists for profit in their fight against contractualization and for decent wages, security of tenure, and other basic worker rights. We call on the Duterte administration to remain faithful to its election campaign promise to end the suffering of working Filipinos under the yoke of contractual and flexible labor schemes.###