Tulfo to DOLE: Block business permit renewal of firms not releasing 13th month pay

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, October 6) — Senator Raffy Tulfo on Wednesday urged the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) to block the renewal of business permits of companies not releasing their employees’ 13th month pay.

He proposed it during a Senate committee hearing on labor, employment, and human resources development, noting that many workers do not receive their 13th month pay even after the Dec. 24 deadline set by law.

“Magpa-Pasko na po. This is the time of the year kung saan inaasam ng ating mga manggagawa na makatanggap po sana sila ng kanilang 13th month pay. Ang nangyayari po kasi kadalasan ay hindi naibibigay ito sa kanila dahil ginugulangan at dinudugasan sila ng kanilang mga employer,” he said.

[Translation: Christmas is near. This is the time of the year when workers look forward to their 13th month pay. What often happens is that this is not given to them because they are cheated by their employers.]

Tulfo said DOLE should enter into a memorandum of agreement (MOA) with local governments units and the Business Permits and Licensing Office (BPLO) to see this suggestion through.

He also suggested that the MOA should state that companies renewing their business permits must present evidence to BPLO that they released the 13th month pay on time.

Labor Assistant Secretary Leonard Constantine-Serrano suggested releasing advisories to companies, but Tulfo said it is not enough.

“Hangga’t hindi po sila nasasaktan, balewala po ‘yang advisory na ‘yan dahil kahit nga may batas na tungkol sa 13th month pay ay sinusuway pa din ito ng mga employer. Kailangan po makatikim sila ng consequence para sila po ay umaksyon,” Tulfo said.

[Translation: Until they get 'hurt', those advisories will not work because despite the presence of the law on 13th month pay, employers still do not comply. They need to suffer the consequences for them to take action.]