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DOLE fast tracks IRR for Expanded Maternity Leave Act

by Marje Pelayo   |   Posted on Friday, March 8th, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III assured to expedite the crafting of the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) for the Expanded Maternity Leave Law that extends the maternity leave benefits of female employees.

The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) has 90 days to craft the IRR, but Bello is confident that the agency will be able to finish the draft within 45 to 60 days.

Under the new law, maternity leave benefits of 60 days or two months have been extended to 105 days or more than three months.

It was signed by President Rodrigo Duterte on February 20, 2019.

The new law takes effect 15 days after publication of the IRR in broadsheets of national circulation. – Marje Pelayo (with details from Aiko Miguel)

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DOH begins consultations for Universal Health Care law rules

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Thursday, June 13th, 2019

The Department of Health (DOH) on Thursday began the public consultations for the drafting of the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) of the Universal Health Care (UHC) Act.

The DOH said the first public consultations for regions 1, 2 and Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) will be held in Baguio City from June 13 to 14.

The agency said the conduct of a series of public forums across the country aims to make the process of drafting the IRR inclusive and consultative.

“We want to hear from different stakeholders most especially the public because it is truly the Filipino people who will benefit from the UHC,” the DOH said in a statement posted on Twitter.

President Rodrigo Duterte signed the UHC into law last February 20.

The law makes all Filipinos members of Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (Philhealth), either as direct or indirect contributors, providing immediate eligibility and access to preventive, curative, rehabilitative and palliative care for medical and emergency health services.

The measure urges the private sector to help provide improved health benefit packages for Filipinos to reduce their expenses.

The DOH has been given 180 days to outline and complete the law’s implementing guidelines.

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said they are now moving to fast track the implementation of the UHC law.

“It is a big undertaking and we’re now laying the groundwork for the sustainability and effectiveness of this reform that aims to address a number of gaps in our health system,” Duque said.

The DOH said the current draft of the IRR was put together with the help of various stakeholders and representatives from the public and private sector.

The agency said the public consultation for Visayas and Mindanao areas will be announced in the coming weeks through DOH official social media accounts.

The DOH earlier expressed confidence it will be able to finish the draft before the 180 days and the law’s implementing rules will be available by July or August this year.

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DOLE to closely monitor firms violating Labor Code, Expanded Maternity Leave Act

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Friday, May 3rd, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) has assured it will closely monitor employers following the signing of the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) for the Republic Act 11210 or the Expanded Maternity Leave Act.

The implementing rules for the law were signed on Labor Day (May 1) in San Fernando, Pampanga, months after President Rodrigo Duterte signed the measure in February.

READ: IRR for Expanded Maternity Leave Law signed on Labor Day

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said they will keep watch of companies’ that will discriminate against women in their hiring practices following concerns on the “higher cost implications” of the new law.

“Mayroon naman tayong inspectorial power, puwede naming inspeksyunin yan,” Bello said.

Article 135 of the Philippine Labor Code states that it shall be unlawful for any employer to discriminate against any woman employee with respect to terms and conditions of employment solely on account of her sex.

Bello stressed that employers should hire female workers based on their competence and integrity and that the additional leave benefits for women should not be a concern to employers.

“Ang mga employers, when they hire workers they rise on the basis of their competence and integrity hindi yun sa buntis o sa ganda. It’s on the confidence and integrity of the worker kaya yung dagdag na araw na kanilang leave, it should not be a concern to our employer,” he said.

Under the law, working mothers in private and public sectors – regardless of civil status – will be granted 105 days of paid maternity leave with the option to extend for 30 days without pay.

Solo mothers can get additional 15 days of leave.

The previous law only allowed female workers a 60-day paid maternity leave for normal childbirth and 78 days for cesarean delivery.

Husbands can also benefit from the new law as it includes a provision allowing the allocation of seven maternity leave days to fathers. This is on top of the seven-day paternity leave provided under the Paternity Leave Act of 1996.

Bello also said that instead of raising concern on the additional cost implications, employers should appreciate the law which provides for women’s rights to health and decent work.

“Dapat i-appreciate ‘yan ng mga employer, alam mo kung bakit? This expanded maternity leave is intended to improve and ensure the health of our lady worker,” he said.

Meanwhile, Malacañang lauded the recent signing of the IRR, which will pave the way for the full implementation of the law.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said that aside from added maternity leave benefits for female workers, the law also means more quality time to spend with the family.

“Imagine 105 days, that means you will have more time with your family, quality time. And that means also your health will be protected, because you will not be forced to work immediately after giving birth,” he said.

“And also the husbands, ‘di ba mayroon pa silang extended, parang 15, magiging 15 days na, so makakabuti sa pamilya iyon,” he added.

Employers who will fail or refuse to comply with the law will be fined of not less than P20,000 nor more than P200,000; imprisonment of less than six years and one day nor more than 12 years or both.

Failure to implement the new law shall also be a ground for non-renewal of business permits. (with reports from Rosalie Coz and Leslie Huidem)

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IRR for Expanded Maternity Leave Law signed on Labor Day

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Wednesday, May 1st, 2019

Courtesy:n REUTERS

The Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) for the Republic Act 11210 or the Expanded Maternity Leave Law have been signed on Labor Day (May 1).

Heads of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), Civil Service Commission (CSC) and Social Security System (SSS) signed the IRR in San Fernando, Pampanga. This will pave the way for the full implementation of the Expanded Maternity Leave Act.

Under the law, working mothers in private and public sectors – regardless of civil status – will be granted 105 days of paid maternity leave with option to extend for 30 days without pay.

Solo mothers can get additional 15 days of leave.

The previous law only allowed female workers a 60-day paid maternity leave for normal childbirth and 78 days for cesarean delivery.

Husbands can also benefit from the law as it includes a provision allowing the allocation of seven maternity leave days to fathers. This is on top of the seven-day paternity leave provided under the Paternity Leave Act of 1996.

President Rodrigo Duterte signed the Expanded Maternity Leave Act in February.

READ: President Duterte signs Expanded Maternity Leave Act

Senator Risa Hontiveros, the law’s author and principal sponsor, welcomed the signing of the IRR, calling it good news to all women workers.

“I am happy that the implementing rules and regulations of the measure were signed and released today,” Hontiveros said in a statement. “I welcome this development as this ensures the full implementation of the law and that all women will benefit from the measure.”

“This is certainly good news to all women workers and their families who have patiently waited for the law’s IRR,” she added. – Robie de Guzman (with details from Rosalie Coz)

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