Davao Region –The Davao Accredited Voluntary Arbitrators Organization (DAVAO), Inc. in cooperation with the National Conciliation and Mediation Board, Regional Branch No XI conducted another successful area-wide seminar entitled “Seminar on Contractualization (Endo) on October 14, 2016 at the Grand Men Seng Hotel, A. Pichon St., Davao City.

This initiative was aimed to provide the companies a deeper understanding and updates on contractualization, the endo or end-of-contract and the current initiatives of the government towards policy reforms.

Different perspectives from the labor, the management and the government were presented by three honourable Resource Speakers respectively.

The first Resource Speaker was Cong. Ariel “Ka Ayik” B. Casilao, Anakpawis Party-list Representative who presented the labor’s point of view.  During the campaign period, Presidential candidate now President Rodrigo Roa Duterte was clear in his campaign thrusts for workers –Endo must stop, according to Rep. Casilao.  He further opened his proposal for the Anti-Contractualization Bill or House Bill No. 556.

Casilao added that contractualization is already mandatory to regularize workers whether manpower agency or principal. When asked about the regularization of workers, Casilao said, I am open being a representative.  I cannot impose my personal law.  I will submit myself in a collegial manner.  Because congress will not act as an individual but will act collectively.   Therefore, I can only act during the deliberation but at the end of the day whether or not to amend, to repeal or to implement the new law, it will take a process.  I will submit fully with the process.

The second Resource Speaker was Atty. Vincent C. Juan of Sycip, Salazar and Gatmaitan Law Firm who gave the management perspective on contractualization.  He clearly defined the permissible or legitimate job contracting and cited examples by citing jurisprudence. He defined the labor only contracting which is prohibited under the law, likewise, its corresponding effect on the contractor and the principal.  He further emphasized that endo is an abused form of contractualization.

Atty. Juan said that one of the advantages of contractualization is that it ensures survival of employers and sustains job generation. The great majority of contractualizing business establishments—mostly small and medium-scale entities, who, according to the government statisticians account for approximately 99 percent of all business establishments—simply cannot afford the financial trappings that go with regular-status employment, he stated.  Total ban on contractualization may be detrimental to the labor market, he further presented.

The third Resource Speaker was Atty. Connie Beb A. Torralba, formerly an employee of NCMB-RBXI now OIC-Med-Arbiter of DOLE, ROXI.  Atty. Torralba presented the Department Order No. 162, series of 2016 regarding the suspension of registration of new application as contractor or sub-contractor under Department Order No. 18-A.

Atty. Torralba stressed the call of DOLE for employers to conduct an independent and self-assessment to determine the necessary and desirable positions and so with their contractors or sub-contractors.  Furthermore, to voluntary regularize their employees rather than to wait for DOLE or for their employees to file a complaint in NLRC.

The seminar ended with very good feedback from the participants.  There were remarkably   238 attendees from both labor and management sector of different companies from Region XI including Region X.  Sheila A. Rivera, LIO-designate.