On the first anniversary of the SeNA Baldoz tells SEADOs: "Don't stop on your accomplishments"

Date Posted: November 3rd, 2011 12:00 AM

Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz the other day has challenged the DOLE’s more than 300 Single Entry Approach Desk Officers (SEADOs) “not to stop at their remarkable accomplishments, but aim higher to further strengthen industrial peace and labor justice in the country.”

She issued the challenge during the 1st Single Entry Approach (SEnA) Congress held at the Occupational Safety and Health Center in Quezon City.

“Continue the dedication you have shown during the first year of implementation of the SEnA,” Baldoz exhorted the SEADOs.

“I know this means more work for all of us, but we have to remember to place the public above self. We cannot separate ourselves from the public whom we have chosen to serve, and hence, all our actions must always take public interest into account,” she said in her message to the Congress.

Baldoz said she was “very pleased to grace” the Congress, which highlights the first-year accomplishments of the Single-Entry Approach (SEnA), a major DOLE reform program which provides an inexpensive, accessible, non-litigious, and fair mechanism to resolve issues and concerns between workers and employers without resorting to tedious and lengthy legal proceedings.

She commended the SEADOs during the Congress, saying that from the reports she has received from regional offices and attached agencies, the SEADOs have shown efficiency, fairness, and speed in responding to requests for assistance, resulting to settlements and resolutions within a day of filing or within the next day after filing of the requests.

“So now we know that as we continue to join hands in pushing for this major reform, this will really earn for the Philippines that reputation which is to be sustained, and that is, as the industrial peace hub of Asia,” she added.

“We used to be the industrial strike capital of Asia but we have reversed that,” Baldoz emphasized to the tripartite partners, SEADOs, DOLE officials, and guests that attended the Congress. By means of SEnA, we chose to consolidate what had been achieved in the area of voluntary dispute settlement,” she emphasized.

Implemented DOLE-wide, the SEnA provides a 30-day period within which SEADOs, the frontline officers responsible for the SEnA implementation, conciliate and mediate labor issues until their successful settlement.

Baldoz instituted the SEnA by issuing DOLE Department Order No. 107-10 in October 2010. A product of a series of inclusive social dialogues with DOLE social partners and in response to the President’s directive to reform the labor arbitration and adjudication systems, the SEnA is backed up by the National Tripartite and Industrial Peace Council (NTIPC), which adopted TIPC Resolution No. 3, Series of 2010 in support of the reform.

Baldoz said that since the SEnA’s implementation, DOLE’s efforts to reform labor arbitration and adjudication took on a two-pronged approach.

“The first is on ensuring that the reforms in labor dispute settlement are done in full transparency, efficiency and integrity, and second, that it is aimed at transforming the traditional American-based, conflict-prone, and litigious labor relations system towards that reflective of the Asian and Philippine culture of consensus-building,” the labor and employment chief said.

She added that the SEnA thrust is for the de-judicialization of the dispute settlement procedures and use of alternative dispute resolution where dialogue plays a primary role.

Even the Bible says, “Let us sit down and reason together,” Baldoz remarked in emphasizing the SEnA’s importance.

To date, there are more than trained 300 SEADOs attending promptly to requests for assistance in all provincial offices and attached agencies. These SEADOs bring to the negotiating table parties in dispute to lessen their inconveniences and potential expenses in litigious cases.

Representatives of labor and management expressed unwavering support to the SEnA during the Congress.

Management sector representative Emerico de Guzman assured that the employers sector is all out in its support of SEnA as a fair and speedy dispute resolution mechanism, while labor leader Victorino Balais of the Philippine Transport and General Workers Organization-Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (PTGWO-TUCP) said: “The SEnA is long overdue, at dapat mas lalo pang pagandahin natin ito!”

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