DOLE “Greening the Philippine Enterprise Program” gets boost with support from social partners, international organizations

Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz has acknowledged the DOLE’s social partners–labor, management, and government–as well as international organizations, for their support in raising public awareness on climate change and strengthening responses to it.

At a recent meeting of DOLE agencies involved in the Greening the Philippine Enterprise Program organized by the Institute for Labor Studies (ILS), a DOLE agency, Baldoz expressed comfort over the progress of DOLE-led efforts to address climate change through sustained social dialogue, partnership, and convergence.

“We witness today the adverse effects of natural events attributed to climate and environmental changes resulting to the displacement of workers and their families, which affect their productivity and income, so we cannot understate the importance of joint efforts to mitigate and respond to the adverse effects of this natural phenomenon,” she said.

The meeting highlighted the DOLE’s green accomplishments, in cooperation with the social partners and international groups.

Jointly presided by Executive Director Teresita S. Cucueco of the Occupational Safety and Health Center (OSHC) and Deputy Executive Director Mary Grace Riguer of the Institute for Labor Studies, the meeting cited progress on the 14 Commitments forged during the First Philippine Green Jobs Conference between the DOLE, Climate Change Commission, National Youth Commission, Department of Environment and Natural Resources, and the social partners that included the Employers Confederation of the Philippines, Federation of Free Workers, and the Trade Union Congress of the Philippines.

The conference, which Secretary Baldoz initiated in Manila in August 2011 in cooperation with the International Labour Organisation and Australian AID sought to promote awareness on the impact of climate change in the world of work.

The progress on the 14 Commitments was embodied in a document, DOLE’s Green Platform for Inclusive Growth, which the Bureau of Local Employment presented at the meeting.

In summary, the DOLE’s “key Green accomplishments” from 2011 to 2014 under the 14 Commitments are in four areas, as follows: (1) Awareness Raising; (2) Research; (3) Skills Training; and (4) Livelihood.

In raising awareness, the BLE cited DOLE’s active participation in climate change forums and occupational safety and health (OSH) conferences facilitated by the Bureau of Workers with Special Concerns and the OSHC.

“We have organized the “Greener Pathways to Green Workplace, Greener Workforce”, initiated by the National Wages and Productivity Commission, and have attended seminars on disaster preparedness organized by the Employees Compensation Commission,” the BLE said in its report.

On research, it cited “Green Jobs Mapping Project”, “Generating Green Jobs through Green Procurement”, and “Green Adoption Determinants in Renewable Energy, Insurance and Tourism” which the ILS initiated in cooperation with ILO. It also cited the  “Research on Work Environment of Child Labor in Agriculture” by the OSHC.

On skills training, the report mentioned the TESDA’s Green Technology Center and Green TVET programs; the OSHC’s TOT and its mandatory OSH courses; and the NWPC’s Green Productivity for Regional Wage Boards.

On livelihood, the BLE report focused on DOLE’s Integrated Livelihood Program on green recycled products, fan-making using bamboo, and rug-making and handmade production of house decors using abaca and shell.

It also cited the Tulong Alalay para sa Ating Disadvantaged Workers being  implemented by the BWSC.

To reinforce the efforts, the BLE bared a plan to study the conduct of Green Job Fairs, Green Career Guidance, and other worthwhile Green initiatives in the coming months.

Baldoz commended the BLE for the report, saying: “The report highlighted greater awareness on climate change, backed by a stronger convergence among the tripartite partners, civil society, and international organizations.”

She said mitigating the effects of climate change means putting greater emphasis on awareness; to sense of responsibility; and to action and convergence among key sectors.

“Mitigating the effects of climate change is one of the expected outcomes of the country’s goal of inclusive growth, in line with the Philippine Labor and Employment Plan 2011-2016, and as embodied in the Philippine Development Plan 2011-2016,” she said.

In her closing remarks at the meeting, Executive Director Cucueco thanked the University of the Philippines for earlier showcasing to the members of the Greening the Philippine Enterprise the best in the University’s Green initiatives, including the UP Greenhouse Organic Garden Composting, Food and Yard Waste Processing Areas, and Materials Recovery Facility, managed by the Samahan ng Manininda sa UP Campus, during the movement’s preceding 3rd Meeting conducted at the University Hotel, UP Campus, Diliman, Quezon City on 20 June 2014.

END/markcerdenia

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