Labor and Employment (DOLE) Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz reported yesterday that the expeditious settlement of labor disputes using the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) mechanism, which ensured integrity, efficacy, and fairness and avoided litigious and expensive proceedings in labor row resolution, has resulted in the granting of over P49.893 million in collective bargaining benefits and other monetary gains to 5, 326 workers from 1 January to 31 August 2015.
Citing a report of National Conciliation and Mediation Board (NCMB) OIC Executive Director Shirley M. Pascual, the labor chief said that through the ADR, the NCMB disposed of 511 cases during the said period.
“Alternative dispute resolution is beneficial not only in resolving disputing parties to avoid contentious settlement, but also in facilitating speedy, yet impartial, delivery of labor justice, which is indispensable in promoting industrial peace and workers’ productivity,” Baldoz emphasized.
OIC Executive Director Pascual, in her report, explained that the high settlement rates during the first eight months of 2015 significantly yielded lower cases of actual strikes/lockouts. The NCMB has settled four work stoppages, or 100 percent rating. The said settlement resulted in collective bargaining benefits amounting to P1.5 million for 92 affected workers.
She also reported that the disposed cases covered 132 voluntary arbitration (VA) cases, 4, 085 SENA cases, 343 preventive mediation (PM) cases, and 164 notices of strike/lockout (NS/L).
According to Pascual’s report, among all settled cases, the highest monetary benefits resulted from the resolution of 116 out of the 164 NS/L cases amounting to P393 million that benefitted 3, 790 workers nationwide.
Meanwhile, the NCMB also disposed 299 out of the 343 PM cases handled, resulting to monetary benefits totalling to P48 million which benefitted 1,444 workers.
Pascual also reported economic packages of P257 million awarded to 3,279 workers from resolved 132 disposed VA cases.
Meanwhile, Secretary Baldoz underscored the increased operation of Labor Management Cooperations (LMC) and Grievance Machineries (GM) in companies that helped in resolving disputes through its promotion of good labor-management relations.
“The LMCs and GMs’ presence in establishments continue to be one of the factors that resolve plant-level grievances,” Pascual added, giving credit to 44 GMs operationalized and 115 GMs instituted in both organized and unorganized establishments nationwide.
“The DOLE, together with NCMB and other attached agencies, will continue its efforts to further bolster ADR mechanisms to strengthen the twin goals of dispute prevention and efficient labor settlement system for the creation of a stable and just climate of industrial relations,” said Baldoz.