13th Month Pay is a statutory benefit to be paid to rank-and-file employees in the Philippines each year. Employees, with at least one month of service, are entitled to receive an additional payment equivalent to one-twelfth (1/12) of the employee’s basic salary for the relevant calendar.
As per the statement released by Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III reported on Thursday, October 8, 2020, he stated that the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) is looking into the possible deferment in the granting of 13th month pay which causes an uproar to mostly employees who has been waiting for this by the end of the year.
Bello stated via virtual press briefing: “Instead of not paying, why don’t we just consult labor and management so they could agree on deferment, let’s say give the benefit next year or next month. For me this is a more acceptable formula to address the issue of non-payment of the mandated benefit. Under the law, the commercial establishments classified as distressed are exempted from providing their workers with 13th month pay but the meaning of distressed establishment is broad and needs to be redefined. We are still studying this and it would be a subject of thorough discussion by both management and employees.”
With this being said, most of the Filipino workers shared this raged and disappointment to the released statement pointing out the insensible response to the dire need of the hardworking employees who had to endure a lot during this time of pandemic.
KMU Chairman, On DOLE proposal for 13th month pay deferment. “It is the government’s responsibility to bail out MSMEs in times of emergencies. Deferments and exemptions are not a good tune to sing amid this pandemic. Why make the workers suffer by letting them be submerged in debts here and there?” -Elmer ‘Ka Bong’
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