Inflation, low wages and unemployment are the top economic concerns of labor, Wennie Sancho, General Alliance of Workers Associations secretary general, said Tuesday, July 20.
“Amid the pandemic, the economic situation of the majority of workers in the country has become worse and miserable,” Sancho said in a press release, ahead of the State of the Nation Address of President Rodrigo Duterte next week.
He said hundreds of Overseas Filipino Workers stranded because of the COVID-19 pandemic have joined the country’s massive army of unemployed.
The latest Pulse Asia Survey shows that as of April 2021, the country’s unemployment rate nationwide was at 8.7 percent that would translate to about 4.4 million unemployed individuals, Sancho said.
Hunger and poverty is on the rise as the same survey shows that about 15 percent of about 4.2 million Filipino families have experienced moderate and extreme hunger, which is alarming, Sancho said.
He said in Western Visayas, the nominal wage is P395 per day for commercial/industrial workers.
It, however, has drastically reduced to P302. 55 in terms of real wage, which is the actual purchasing power of the peso at P0.76, posting a decrease of P92. 55 per day or P2,406 per month, he said.
Unfortunately the voice of the labor representatives on of the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board is not being heard, it is muted by the COVID-19, Sancho said.*