Villanueva’s Bill Pushes for Flexible Working Hours for Filipinos

Filipino workers will gain more control over their work once Senator Joel S. Villanueva’s bill seeking to grant employees and employers the option to implement a flexible working arrangement scheme goes on full effect.

The said bill will amend Article 83 of the Labor Code of the Philippines which mandates that the regular working hours of any employees shall not exceed eight hours a day.

Flexible Work Schedule as Business Strategy

According to Villanueva, there is a need to make an exception to the standard eight hours of work rendered by employees especially when the exigency of business operation or national emergency requires the mutual adoption of such.

workers in a sewing factory

The proposed measure will allow adoption of an agreement between the employer and the employee on the work schedule and arrangement. The work arrangement should not entail a diminution of benefits and should also consider that the hours of work should not exceed 48 hours a week.

Villanueva believes that the adoption of flexible working schedule as a business strategy is a response to the changes in the labor market and like employment.

He added that companies should allow non-traditional working arrangements like flexitime, a four-day workweek, working from home, shift flexibility and others to give workers more independence and control over their work.

construction workers on the road

DOLE Department Advisory No. 2 Series of 2009

On January 30, 2009, the Department of Labor and Employment released Department Advisory No. 2, providing guidelines on the adoption of flexible work arrangements, as one of the coping mechanism and remedial measures in times of economic difficulties and national emergencies.

The said advisory recognizes the adoption of the compressed workweek, reduction of workdays, rotation of workers, forced leave, broken-time schedule, and flexible-holidays schedule, as alternative schemes to cushion and mitigate the effect of the loss of income of the employees.

The effectivity and implementation of any flexible work arrangements under the said department advisory, however, is temporary.

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