House approves final reading of 4-day work week

MANILA, Philippines - The House of Representatives has approved the third and final reading of House Bill 6152, a measure that reduces the number of work days into four days by increasing the number of daily work hours.

Under this bill, companies may decrease the number of workdays by extending the usual eight-hour workday. Such bill aims to boost business competitiveness, labor productivity as well as work efficiency.

House approves final reading of 4-day work week
“These arrangements give employers and employees flexibility in fixing hours of work compatible with business requirements and the employees’ need for a balanced work-life,”Baguio City Rep. Mark Go, one of the bill’s authors, said in a statement.

If such measure is implemented by a company, employees can work four days a week but must render work up to 12 hours a day. However, if the employee renders beyond 48 hours of work a week, they will receive an overtime pay.

Moreover, employees get up to three days off under this set-up.

Employees are required to render 40 to 48 hours a week for five to six days under the current Labor Code. Such bill will amend Articles 93, 87, and 91 of the Labor Code.

It should be noted that the compressed work week is voluntary and will be an option aside from the current five- or six-day work week.

Netizens have mixed views on the said bill. Here are some of their reactions.

“THIS might be the BEST bill for all the working class in the goverment by far. If our goverment cannot provide a decent remuneration to the zealous Juans, most especially who are in the ranks, at least an extra day to catch up for the things that really matter (may it be family, passion or dreams) will break it even. Hi Mr. President, please seal the bill,” Michael Quezon commented.

John S. Alenciaga wrote: “The proposed bill is anti-worker but pro-capitalist. The decrease in working days is equivalent to reduction on input cost of capitalist. But also increases their income through additional working hours of the workers. But the workers on the other hand are now subjected to an increase rate of exploitation. They work more than they can accomplish that puts their health at risk aside from lower productivity as working hours increases.”

“The state should uphold security of tenure as a matter of national policy especially for firms operating in the long-run. Second, develop national industries that will prodivde direct benefits to the needs of our nation (becuse we cannot even produce our own toothpick!). Finally, the implementation of decent and living wage as a matter of respect for the contributions of workers to the economic well-being of our country.

Without that, the four-day work week is a sham, like the optional wearing of high heels,” Roxoanne Doron said.

-- Mini, The Summit Express

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