DOLE pushes for passage of workers' compensation authority bill

September 28, 2010 10:55 am 

MANILA, Sept. 27 — The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) on Monday called on Congress for the speedy passage of the Philippine Workers’ Compensation Authority Bill (PWCAB), in a bid to provide stronger social protection and other safety nets for Filipino workers.

“It is high time that Filipino workers get the protection and compensation they deserve, especially in times of untoward incidents and unpleasant situations,” Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz said as she urged legislators to pass the bill soon.

Baldoz added: “We are also pushing for the simplification of the benefits system to avoid confusion, particularly in the grant of primary and basic benefits under the ECP.”

The proposed law, designed to set up a unified, more efficient, and dynamic employees’ compensation program (ECP) for private and public workers, including migrants, will pave the way for the creation of a single state entity, the Philippine Workers Compensation Authority (PWCA), which will oversee the administration and implementation of the ECP.

The proposed law will also establish a Work Contingency Insurance Fund (WCIF) from which all payments of benefits for workers will be sourced, including provisions for a more systematic collection of contributions to minimize defaults in payments.

More importantly, the bill highlights the concept of working life, which is the extent in time to which a worker or his/her beneficiaries maybe be entitled to enjoy following any loss of income benefits.

Commenting on this provision of the bill, Baldoz said this will give workers and their beneficiaries more flexible options and greater scope of coverage and protection.

“It will also ensure the rehabilitation of disabled victims from occupational diseases or work accidents and the possible inclusion of the informal sector workers in the program,” Baldoz explained.

The bill is now filed at the Lower House which was sponsored by Congressman Juan Edgardo Angara, while Senator Jinggoy Ejercito Estrada is sponsoring it at the Senate. (PNA)

DCT/MPC

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