Yokohama employees seek DOLE assistance on labor issue
MANILA, Philippines – The Alliance of Yokohama Employee’s Union (AYE) and the Alliance of Yokohama Supervisor’s Union (AYS) are seeking the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) assistance and support, particularly of Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III.
In a joint statement released by AYE and AYS to Center for People’s Media (CPM), the union officers claimed the majority of their members are being pressured and harassed by Yokohama management.
“Alex,” who refused to be identified for fear of losing his job, said that before their union was recognized as the sole and exclusive bargaining agent of Yokohama Philippines by winning the Certification Election (C.E) in August of 2015, at least five of their union officers had been harassed and several terminated without due process.
“Bale yung isang opisyal ng unyon namin, pinagbintangang tumatanggap daw po ng suhol mula sa aming mga supplier. Nangyari po ito nuong 2014 pero isinampa po yung kaso sa kanya noong Nobyembre ng 2015,” Alex said to CPM.
[One of our union officers was accused of accepting bribes from our supplier. This supposedly happened in 2014 but the management filed a case against him on November 2015].
Alex said the incident took place during a family event in 2014 wherein one of his colleagues received a cheque from their supplier. The employee who received the cheque said it was a gift and a gesture of gratitude for the job well done. But when it reached the management, the story had been twisted to accuse the union officers of hiding the alleged irregularities.
“Nalaman kasi ng management na yung isang opisyal namin ang namuno para mabuo ang unyon,, kaya lumabas yung bribery issue. Binigyan siya ng memo tapos after one week termination,” Alex said.
[The management identified who instigated the formation of our union, that’s the reason why the bribery issue popped up. He was first given a memo, and one week later he was immediately discharged from service].
Alex said the proliferation of such irregularities in the company can be traced not to the supervisors and rank & file employees, but from their human resource manager Egelberto Dolo.
“Hindi kayang humingi ng isang ordinaryong empleyado ng anumang halaga sa isang supplier dahil hindi naman ito direktang nakaka-transaksyon ang mismong supplier. Ang pwede lang sa ganitong level ay ang aming HR Manager na si Egelberto Dolo,” Alex said.
[The ordinary employee cannot demand anything from the supplier because they are not directly involved in any business transactions. The only qualified person who can engage on such level of transaction is our HR Manger Engelberto Dolo].
Aside from this, Alex also said that the on-going Collective Bargaining Negotiation that started this year has slowed to a crawl. He said the process is being stymied by the Yokohama management negotiating team headed by Vice President Angelina C. Casasola and Juanito C. Arona.
“Halos sa tatlong buwang negosasyon namin, walang sinang-ayunan ang management sa aming mga proposal. Nuong August 12 nga, yung kanilang counter offer sa amin ay nakakainsulto,” Alex explained.
[For the past 3 months of negotiations, the management always rejected our proposals. Last August 12, for example, the counter-offer of the management was downright insulting].
Alex said the supervisors union is proposing a wage increase of 12 percent, and the rank & file 100 pesos. But the counter offer of Yokohama management was only 12 pesos and 6.5 pesos, respectively.
“Nakaka-insulto ang counter offer nila, kasi mas mababa pa ito sa annual increase namin nung mga nakaraang taon. Alam namin kayang ibigay ng kumpanya ang aming demands kasi sa nakuha naming datos, nuong 2015 mayroong net income ang kumpanya na aabot sa isang bilyong piso o nasa 33 million dollars plus,” Alex said.
[The counter offer of the management is very insulting because it is much lower that the annual increase we received from the past year. And besides, we know that the company can meet our demands. Based on the data we gathered, the company’s net income in 2015 was around one billion pesos or 33 million dollars plus].
Alex hopes that Labor Secretary Bello will hear their plight, so that the anti-union activity of the Yokohama management can be addressed properly and their illegally terminated colleagues reinstated immediately. CPM