TO: All PCCI Members                                                         MEMORANDUM

FROM: Ruben J. Pascual, Secretary-General                      12 March 2020

Advisory on COVID 19 Response Guidelines

In light of the increased cases of COVID 19 outbreaks in the country, the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), in consultation with the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), has adopted the following remedial measures:

(ANNEX A: NEDA and DOLE Presentation on COVID 19 Economic Impact and Mitigating Measures)

1. Labor Advisory 4: Guidelines on 2019 Novel Coronavirus Prevention and Control at the Workplace, which identifies precautionary measures employers are directed to implement such as:

  • Strict hygiene, use of personal protective equipment and monitoring of workers’ health

  • In workplaces where workers are at high risk of infection - a screening program in accordance with DOH Guidelines; and,

  • For workers who are sick or with fever - to immediately isolate and observe the worker, decontaminate the workplace, and report the worker to the DOH

  • In the event a worker is sick or has fever but not suspected to have the COVID 19, employer must advise the worker to take prudent measures to limit the spread of communicable disease

 
The Guideline also spells out technical assistance to be provided by the DOLE and the DOH in the form of risk assessment, use of protective equipment, workplace improvements to reduce likelihood of infection and contamination of materials, and, capacity-building of COVID 19 focal persons.

(ANNEX B: Labor Advisory 04-2020)

2. Labor Advisory 9: Guidelines on the Implementation of Flexible Work Arrangements (FWAs) as Remedial Measure due to the Ongoing Outbreak of Coronavirus Disease 2019, which identified 3 types of arrangements companies may adopt:

  • Reduction of work hours or work days depending on the nature of the establishments’ nature of work

  • Rotation of workers and,

  • Forced leaves

DOLE further encourages other alternative arrangements that are deemed applicable as reached by labor and management.

(ANNEX C: Labor Advisory 09-2020)


(ANNEX D: FWA Implementing Guidelines)

3. DOLE COVID 19 Adjustments Measurement Program, a safety net providing integrated and comprehensive packages of support including financial assistance and interventions to at-risk enterprises and affected workers to be sourced from President’s Contingency Fund.

  • Wage subsidy to avoid interruption of employment among affected workers due to curtailing, suspension or termination of operation.  The subsidy shall be equivalent to the prevailing wage but not to exceed 10,000 per worker monthly for a maximum period of 3 months subject to conditionalities

  • Financial support for totally displaced workers and workers who are suspended or temporarily displaced and who do not receive regular wage

  • Employment facilitation to displaced workers where they will be given referral services for available job opportunities suitable to their qualification

  • Grant for trainings for required skills and competitiveness either in-house or by an accredited technical-vocational training institution.  The cap for the cost of training is P12,000.00 plus P3,000.00 allowance for trainees

 
At risk enterprises is defined as private enterprise exhibiting financial strain due to COVID 19 and facing possible curtailing, suspension or termination of operation; has not recently retrenched or reduced number of workers or implemented flexible work arrangements; and, does not engage in business that would bring the wage subsidy of the government to disrepute.
 
Affected workers is defined as displaced workers or workers whose employment have been severed by reason of permanent cessation of operations or permanent closure of establishment; suspended workers by reason of suspension of operation of business establishment; and, retained workers who do not receive regular wage; reduced wage because of reduced work hours due to implementation of flexible work arrangement.

(See ANNEX B: Labor Advisory 09-2020)
 
In response to the DOLE’s Remedial Measures, we are adopting the following guidelines at the PCCI National Office, and we encourage you to do the same.

 

1. Assign a person to actively monitor government broadcasts, advisories, and press releases in order to keep updated on the situation.

2. Actively enforce all health and safety measures given by DoLE and DoH which include the following:

  • Inform employees on COVID-19 transmission, disease outcome, and treatment options to your workers;

  • Clean and disinfect, as well as make soap and alcohol available at all workstations;

  • Avoid or reduce direct exposure of workers to animals, environments, and objects that may carry COVID-19;

  • Ensure food in canteens are properly prepared, handled, and cooked;

  • Emphasize personal cleanliness to all workers as well as encourage actions which reduce disease transmission such as covering the nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing and always washing hands.

3. Begin looking into flexible work arrangements which include working from home, leaves of absence, and rotational duties as well as looking into online and non-face-to-face meeting arrangements with clients, employees, or board members. 
We have cancelled our sponsored events for the month while waiting for further development and directions from government.
 
We have cancelled our sponsored events for the month while waiting for further development and directions from government.

You and your employees play an important role in the country’s effort to fight and contain the COVID-19 virus.  It is therefore crucial that you do your part, not only as responsible businesses, but as fellow citizens of the Philippine Republic.

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