Representatives of the workers group, COURAGE
QUEZON CITY, Philippines – Government employees want an increase in their monthly minimum wage.
According to Ferdinand Gaite, the national president of the Confederation for Unity, Recognition, and Advancement of Government Employees (COURAGE) they want to receive at least P16,000 per month because the current P10,510 is not sufficient to support their family’s monthly needs.
“Ito biro namin…our take-home pay is not even enough to take us home,” said Gaite.
(We would joke about how our take-home pay is so low that it’s not even enough to take us home.)
Gaite cited as an example the monthly take-home pay of employees in class six municipalities amounting to only P6,831 pesos, is way lower than what they are receiving.
“Ang pinapangarap na lang ng mga maliliit na mga manggagawa, makakain ng tatlong beses isang araw,” he lamented.
(All that an ordinary worker can hope for is to be able to eat three times a day.)
The group asked the government to also consider their situation and that they also deserve just as much pay increase as soldiers and policemen.
“Tao rin naman kami. Iyong kanilang pangangailangan ay pangangailangan din naming,” said Erwin Lanuza, a member of the Quezon City Hall Union.
(We are also human. We have the same needs.)
For its part, the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) remains optimistic that the prices of goods will become stable in the coming months because the National Food Authority’s (NFA) replenishment for its rice buffer stock has already arrived.
The agency also hopes that the prices of oil will drop soon following meetings of oil-producing countries this month.
The prices of rice and oil fuel are the main factors for the rise in the country’s inflation rate.
“Ang tantsa talaga namin is itong latter half mas magiging normalize na yung ating situwasyon ng mga presyo,” said NEDA Undersecretary Rose Edillon.
(Based on our estimate, prices will normalize in the latter half of the year.)
Edillon also confirmed that by September, the unconditional cash transfer will be received by 10 million of the poorest families in the country as part of the government’s mitigating measures against the impact of the Tax Reform Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) law. — Rey Pelayo / Marje Pelayo