Press Releases
OSHS law compliance in Negros Oriental urged

 

Cebu City, Philippines. In another orientation on the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of the new Occupational Safety and Health Standards (OSHS) Law, the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) urged companies in Negros Oriental to abide by what the labor laws require.

“There is a need to ensure maximum compliance of the OSHS Law. Again, this is us reiterating our stand that safety is something that could never be negotiated and compromised,” said DOLE-7 Regional Director, Atty. Johnson G. Cañete.

Just like what the DOLE has been trying to do with the rest of its social partners in other parts of the Region, touching base with companies, employers, contractors, sub-contractors as well as with the different local government units (LGUs) in the province of Negros Oriental, he added, is a huge step toward an effective implementation of the health and safety standards in the workplace.

He thanked the Contractors Association of Negros Oriental Inc. (CONAI) in coordination with the Tripartite Industrial Peace Council (TIPC) in the province for initiating the forum following the effectivity of the IRR on 25 January 2019.

“With the recent developments involving the OSHS Law, part of the DOLE’s job is to enlighten companies about it hoping that when the time comes that their compliance is being checked, they would be able to demonstrate proof of it,” added the DOLE-7 Head.

The DOLE’s conduct of routine inspection among establishments has kicked off, he said, and apart from the General Labor Standards, it certainly focuses on the items falling under the new OSHS Law.

Department Order No. 198, Series of 2018 otherwise known as “An Act Strengthening Compliance with Occupational Safety and Health Standards and Providing Penalties for Violations Thereof” strictly mandates employers, contractors and sub-contractors to comply with work safety standards.

It applies to all branches of economic activity such as establishments located inside special economic zones and other investment promotion agencies; utilities engaged in air, sea and land; and industries such as mining, fishing, construction, agriculture and maritime.

During the forum, the discussion on D.O. 198-18 was handled by Engr. Connie Santo Tomas, who heads the Safety and Control Division of the Occupational Safety and Health Center (OSHC).

Santo Tomas said that contractors and subcontractors engaged in projects of the public sector are also covered with the rules, but NGAs, GOCC’s, GFI’s, SUC’s and LGU’s are excluded as they are governed by appropriate rules and regulations issued by the Civil Service Commission and other government agencies.

Any willful failure or refusal of an employer, contractor or sub-contractor to comply with the occupational standards will hold them liable to pay fines amounting from Php20,000 to Php50,000 with a maximum daily administrative penalty of Php 100,000.00 for every day of non-correction of violation.

DOLE Negros Oriental Field Office (NOFO) Chief Marites G. Mercado then expressed her gratitude to the construction industry players for heeding the call of the DOLE by being one with the Department in ensuring compliance and enforcement of workplace safety through their participation during the activity.

Meanwhile, ITC-Construction President Dr. Absalita Teves urged her fellow contractors to always make workers’ safety and welfare top priority.

 

End//LSenarlo-Taniza with reporting from BDPadua of NOFO

For more information on this report, you may contact Luchel SenarloTaniza, Regional Labor Communication Officer at telefax number (032) 266-2792 or you may send an email at dole_centralvisayas@yahoo.com.

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2019-02-27
SALOME O. SIATON
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