Amidst increasing reports of private companies and manpower agencies enforcing a “no vaccine, no work” policy, militant labor group Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU) has asked the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) to look into these instances of discrimination.
Authorities have long been publicly announcing that such a policy that goes against the voluntary nature of vaccination, is illegal.
However, KMU’s worker complaint hotline has received numerous tips that several private companies have been denying employees work, which for most would be tantamount to no pay, and job opportunities for applicants, without providing proof of vaccination against Covid19.
The group has urged the whistleblowers not to publicly share the names of the companies or agencies they’ve reported, as a consolidated report will be used to file a formal complaint with DOLE.
On the other hand, other companies have implemented and encouraged work from home arrangements for their unvaccinated labor force, in order to prevent the spread of Covid19 while also allowing employees to safely continue earning their much-needed wages.
KMU secretary-general Jerome Adonis warned companies that implement or plan on enforcing such a policy, that being unvaccinated is not grounds for removal from work.
He further stated that considering the slow rollout of the country’s vaccination program, getting your jab is already a difficult task for most without employers adding an additional level of complication.
At the vaccine rollout’s beginning, DOLE already told companies that they should encourage workers to get vaccinated, but shall not discriminate against those that do not or have not yet been able to.
The agency also reminded employers not to charge workers the cost of vaccination if they were to avail of company vaccination programs.
As of Monday, August 8, an estimated 11.88% of the country’s total population has received at least one dose of a Covid19 vaccine, while 10.34% have been fully inoculated.
The numbers, however, are still a far cry from the 70% needed to achieve herd immunity.
Photo: Philippine News Agency