Last year, 3,417 establishments made more than 1 million workers happy with DOLE’s Family Welfare Program—Baldoz
Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz yesterday said that 1,181,323 workers in 3,417 establishments nationwide have benefited last year from the DOLE’s Family Welfare Program (FWP), enabling them to enjoy improved quality of life and productivity in their respective workplaces.
This, as Baldoz reported that the FWP in 2,398 of the 3,417 establishments were DOLE-initiated, specifically, by DOLE regional offices, while the FWP in the rest of the establishments—1,109 in all—were initiated by the establishments themselves.
“Experience shows that companies with active FWP in their workplaces enjoy better employer-employee relationships. FWP boosts workers’ productivity and performance, leading ultimately to business profitability,” said Baldoz.
The Bureau of Workers with Special Concerns (BWSC), in a report to Secretary Baldoz, said 1,878 of the 3,417 establishments each have employees of more than 200, while 1,539 each have less than 200 workers.
It said the 1,878 establishments have a total of 1,002,845 workers; the 1,539 establishments have 178,478 workers, a total of 1,181,323.
“The FWP aims at helping both management and employees to realize better working relationships by fulfilling the needs of a worker’s family. The formula is actually very simple: A happy family means a happy worker; a happy worker means higher productivity; higher productivity means more competitive establishments,” said Baldoz.
She commended the companies with FWP, saying: “Companies that have FWP have a lot to gain because they strive to create innovative human resource approaches towards fostering a family life environment.”
A company with less than 200 workers can set up an FWP by asking the DOLE Regional Office in its area to conduct an orientation for management and workers and to assist in setting up a Family Welfare Committee (FWC).
The FWP advocates for the integration of its 10 dimensions, namely (1) Reproductive Health and Responsible Parenthood; (1) Education and Gender Equality; (3) Spirituality and Values Formation; (4) Income Generation, Livelihood, and Cooperative; (5) Medical Health Care; (6) Nutrition; (7) Environment Protection; (8)Hygiene and Sanitation; (9) Sports and Leisure; and (10) Housing and Transportation.
“These dimensions contribute to the promotion of plant-level initiatives to contribute to the goals of the Philippine Population Management Program and instil family planning/family welfare consciousness among labor and management as a key to promoting workplace productivity and improved worker-management relations,” Baldoz explained.
“The law mandates establishments to provide reproductive health or responsible parenthood and gender equality services, but they are also not prevented from installing or offering other services on medical or healthcare, spirituality or value formation, income generation or livelihood, nutrition, sports and leisure, housing, transportation, environment care, and sanitation,” Baldoz explained.
Under the FWP, companies with less than 200 workers are required to enter into partnerships with health care providers in their respective localities for the delivery of reproductive health services in company-installed health facilities. The FWP also requires employers to inform employees of the availability of family planning services; monitor pregnant working employees among their workforce; and ensure they are provided paid half-day prenatal medical leaves for each month of the pregnancy period they are employed.
The Family Welfare Program is pursuant to Article 134 of the Labor Code and to D.O. 50-03, which provide that “employers shall inform employees of the availability of family planning services in a business establishment”. It is also in line with R.A. 10354, or “An Act Providing for a National Policy on Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health”, which provides for “employees’ protection against any employer who shall suggest, require, unduly influence, or cause, any applicant for employment or an employee to submit himself/herself to sterilization, use any modern methods of family planning, or not use such methods as a condition for employment, continued employment, promotion, or the provision of, employment benefits”.
Of the DOLE regions, Region 12 has the most number of establishments with active FWP, with 150,853 establishments, followed by Region 3 (7,691); Region 11 (3,547); NCR (2,877); Region 1 (2,872); Region 7 (2,865); Region 4-A (2,861); CAR (2,130); Region 9 (1,034); Region 8 (745); Region 6 (349); Region 10 (345); Region 2 (217); and Region 5, with 92 establishments.