Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Judy M. Taguiwalo led the management in this morning’s ceremonial signing of the Collective Negotiations Agreement (CNA) with the DSWD-Social Welfare Employees Association of the Philippines (SWEAP).
The CNA is an agreement which ensures that the rights of the DSWD employees are protected and the right benefits are accorded to them. The stipulated provisions in the CNA are the result of the joint undertaking of the management and the SWEAP representatives which are hinged on the recognition of the basic rights of workers shown through the provision of security of tenure and human working conditions.
The agreement is set to benefit more than the 26,400 strong workforce of the Department.
Among the salient features of the CNA 2016-2019 are:
• Enhanced welfare program for the employees to include the improvement of the day care center; the provision of breastfeeding facilities for the use of the staff and clients; provision of gender-responsive facilities; institutionalization of a non-handicapping environment for persons with disabilities; programs for the solo parents; and, the provision of a comprehensive retirement package;
• The recognition of the contribution of the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) workers and the agreement of the Department and the Association to jointly work through a task force for the welfare and benefits of the said employees, to possible regularization or the provision of appropriate benefits as may be allowed by law;
• The Department, to the extent possible, shall continue to provide office space, equipment and personnel to all regional SWEAP chapters (1 staff for regional chapter, and at least 3 personnel at the Central Office). The budget for this shall be included in the Work and Financial Plan of the Department;
• The provision of 120 association leaves for the National president; 50 days yearly for every other association national officer; 150 days yearly per association chapter (to be apportioned among themselves); and four days every year for every association member;
• The Department and the Association shall develop and implement a one-day mandatory “Serve the People” course for all DSWD employees that is consistent with the Department’s mandate;
The Secretary noted that there are too many MOA workers in the Department, many of whom have been in the service for more than 10 years.
“Parte ng CNA ay ang diskusyon ukol sa pag-aaral kung paanong mabibigyan pansin ang kalagayan ng mga MOA workers, tungo sa regularisasyon o pagbibigay ng nararapat na benepisyo na naaayon sa batas (Part of the CNA provisions is to further study and focus on the plight of the MOA workers. We are looking at working for their regularization or the provision of the right beneficiaries for them which is in accordance with the law),” Sec. Taguiwalo added.
Civil Service Commission (CSC) Chair and Head of the Public Sector Labor Management Union Alicia R. Bala graced the event and shared her message regarding the importance of a CNA to an organization.
The members of the management negotiating panel were Undersecretary Mateo Montaño, Assistant Secretary Aleli Bawagan, Head Executive Assistant Lisa Clemente, Atty. Sandra Jill Santos, Atty. Karlo Florendo, Director Deseree Fajardo, and Director Fernando R. De Villa.
Meanwhile, the SWEAP negotiating panel was led by National President Manuel Baclagon and composed of the following national officers: Ramon Felipe Loza; Melvin Dayrit; Enrique Gascon; Frederico Pagayanan; Maribel Blanco; Lorenzo Subara; Alan Balaba; and Concepcion Deymos.
Sec.Taguiwalo said, “Sinusuportahan namin ang gawain ng asosasyon ng mga kawani, bilang siyang paraan para mapangalagaan din ang sinserong pagseserbisyo publiko. Ito ay parte ng ating pagsulong sa maagap, mapagkalinga at may malasakit na serbisyo publiko. Para maisagawa ito, kailangan din bigyan pansin ang kalalagayan ng mga kawani (We support the work of the employees’ association as a strong workforce is also part of ensuring the provision of sincere public service. This is part of our aim of providing efficient, caring, and compassionate service. In order to do this, we believe that we must also give due attention to the situation of the employees).”
She stressed, “Ang unyonismo ay pagkilala sa mahabang panahon ng pakikibaka ng mga manggagawa at kawani para mapaunlad ang ating kalagayan (unionism is a recognition of the long struggle of previous workers for the development of the current labor force).”
Sec. Taguiwalo noted, “Katuwang ang union sa pag-translate sa kasunduang ito para sa maagap at mapagkalingang pagserbiyo na araw araw nating ginagawa para sa ating mga kababayan. Ito rin ay naayon sa panagawagan ng ating Presidente ng tunay na malasakit para sa mahihirap. Isulong! mga kasamahan natin sa DSWD at patuloy nating paglingkuran ang sambayan (the union is the partner of the DSWD management in translating the provisions of the CNA towards an efficient and compassionate service which we provide daily to the clients whom we served. This is also in accordance to the call of the President to provide genuine and compassionate service to the poor).”
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