Contractualization and the Filipino

.     Mina arrived just as the high-end mall was opening, to apply for a job as a cashier. Stepping into a luxury watch store, she can earn 7k compared to her current 6k contractual stint as a department store cashier. The department store pays the agency 7k, of which the agency pays 6k to Mina.

Part-time workers.

.     Mina has settled in her mind that it is a department store’s prerogative if they ever want to let go of her. What she can’t stand though, is the loss of 1k monthly just because of a middleman, the agency. This new job at an elite car-priced watch brand, can supply the upgrade of 7k salary she wants. Being easily disposed of is not her issue with a job. What irks her most is the loss of money to the agency that adds no value to her, and even bites off a huge portion of what is supposed to be her money.

'I worked briefly in a Fine-China shop, but it didn't work out...'

.     If only there were a law allowing an employee to opt to be easily discharged, instead of being a contractual employee.   Like for Mina, she would be better of being a department store cashier at 7k (the price paid by the department store to the agency), although forfeiting her retention rights. The problem is in despite the law, agencies are still the method by which poor employees are exploited.

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.     Recently the agencies changed strategies. They now go after the expensive multinational companies, investment/world banks, etc. Instead of going after Mina, they now go after the I.T. guy who used to earn 50k for a job, but now just 40k since the job is now contractual. Instead of the agency having a thousand 7k cashiers, they now go after a thousand 50k each I.T. employees. These agencies even offer the HR bosses 2k each month just to encourage them to see the benefit, of having contractual employees which are easy to dispose.

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.     Just looking at job boards, and job-socialmedia sites, agencies now abound to aggressively offer job hunters reduced salaries. No wonder the pro-Filipino president Duterte wants contractualization abolished. But his approach is ill-fated, as companies and lawyers will always work their way around laws. Best is to implement a law, allowing employees to be discharged uncontested (removing the need for agencies). Hiring companies resort to agencies for the ease of disposing an employee. Why not help businesses and the salaryman by allowing him to have full salary? Why not take out the advantage of employment agencies?

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.     Mina re-reads the Pinoycentral forum posts of what is it like in contractual companies. She still dreams of gaining her full salary, albeit without job security. At least, Mina the cashier hopes, she be given the choice of where her money goes.

'These part-time, no-benefits, temporary employees have the uncanny ability to disappear at will.'

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