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Bacolod City, PhilippinesThursday, August 22, 2013
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P125 daily across-the-board
salary increase pushed anew

Lawmakers are pushing for a P125 daily across-the-board salary increase in the private sector to help them cope with the rising prices of basic commodities and services, a press release from Congress said.

Reps. Fernando Hicap (Party-list, Anakpawis), Neri Colmenares (Party-list, Bayan Muna), Luzviminda Ilagan (Party-list, Gabriela), Emmi de Jesus (Party-list, Gabriela), Antonio Tinio (Party-list, ACT Teachers) and James Mark Terry Ridon (Party-list, Kabataan) filed House Bill 253.

The measure is aimed to give a reprieve to workers and their families who are now experiencing the effects of soaring prices of basic goods, fees for public services and rates of public utilities and the ever-worsening domestic economic crisis in general, the press release said.

"The Filipino labor front is unanimously in agreement that the granting of a substantial, legislated wage increase for workers is just, necessary and urgent amidst the growing hunger and poverty among workers and the poor on the one hand and the growing profit and wealth of an elite few on the other," Hicap said in the press release.

Hicap said the continuous erosion of the real value of wages and the weakening purchasing power of the peso have further pressed down wage levels across the country.

According to Hicap, the Filipino workers have been urging Congress to enact a legislated wage hike that will uplift their economic situation.

Ilagan was quoted as saying while workers' wages remain pegged to the floor, the government allowed the rising cost of goods and services and constant increases in the rates of public utilities such as fares, water and electricity and oil prices that brought about damaging effects to the people's livelihood.

The increases shall not include anniversary wage increases, merit wage increases and those resulting from regularization and promotion of employees, the press release also said.*

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