A month after getting no salary hike in the Labor Day celebration, workers in the public and private sectors can expect higher benefits in case of injury or casualty from work-related situations.
President Benigno S. Aquino III has issued Executive Order No. 167 raising the funeral benefits for employees in the private and public sectors from P10,000 to P20,000 under the Employees’ Compensation Program (ECP).
The President also approved a 10 percent across-the-board increase in EC pension “for all EC permanent partial disability, permanent total disability and survivorship pension in the private sector” effective immediately. The last adjustment in the EC pension for private workers was in 2000.
“There is a need to continually improve benefits under the Employees’ Compensation Program to make them more responsive to the welfare and development needs of occupationally disabled workers,” the order read.
“The current Employees’ Compensation Funeral Benefit for both private and public sectors is no longer sufficient to cover funeral costs,” it added.
Under EO signed last May 26 by the President, the benefits would be given to the concerned workers provided that the stability of the State Insurance Funds (SIFs) is not affected and there is no corresponding increase in the EC contribution from the employers.
In the same order, the President directed the Employees Compensation Commission (ECC), Social Security System (SSS), and the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS), to appropriate and release the amounts to cover the benefits for workers from the reserves of the SIFs.
The ECC chaired by Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz was also ordered to issue the rules and regulations to implement EO 167.
The presidential order takes effect 15 days after publication in the Official Gazette and in a national newspaper.
In the recent Labor Day celebration, the President did not announce any salary increase for workers and instead talked about the 2016 elections. Aquino urged Filipinos to choose the next leaders who would sustain the reforms started by his administration that have fostered good governance and economic growth.
While he was mum about workers’ clamor for salary hike, the President highlighted his government’s efforts to promote the country’s robust manufacturing sector as well as address the lingering jobs-skills mismatch problem. He said his government would continue to uplift the lives of the Filipino workers, citing their contribution to economic growth.