By Macon Ramos-Araneta | Manila Standard Today
Vice presidential candidate Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” R. Marcos Jr. on Wednesday pushed for the creation of a magna carta for the more than one million call center workers in the country, citing the many labor and health issues besetting them.
Marcos said there is a need to address their working conditions to make sure they are in line with international labor standards.
“There are reports that many of our workers in the call center industry do not get proper compensation that is based on international standards. There is need for a specific body to make sure that they are not discriminated upon,” said Marcos.
Marcos’ Presidential running mate Senator Miriam Defensor had filed Senate Bill No. 57 or the Magna Carta for Call Center Workers to enforce their right to organize and establish regulations to ensure their welfare.
Marcos said there is also a need to look into the health issues hounding the call center workers.
A study by the International Labor Organization showed that call center workers face serious health risks that include high blood pressure, sleep disorders, diabetes and obesity.
“This is because call center workers work long hours and usually during the graveyard shift,” said Marcos.
He related that call center workers spend most of their time sitting down in a high-pressure environment.
“Such situation puts a toll on their health and we have to protect them,” Marcos recommended.
Marcos added that just like the issues confronting overseas deployment of Filipino workers, the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) industry has also created some adverse social, health and psychological effects especially among the youth who comprise majority of its workers.
The senate had declared that should he win the vice presidency and the new president offers him a post, he would prefer the Department of Labor and Employment because it is an area that would create an immediate impact on the lives of the Filipinos.
“Being the DoLE secretary is a good way to start creating positive and immediate effects on the Filipino people and I believe I can do much to help our workers in terms of making sure their rights under the law are upheld especially in job security, workers’ welfare and creating job opportunities,” Marcos added.