Last May 4, the Employers Confederation of the Philippines (ECOP) organized its first face-to-face Executive Labor Update since the pandemic on the recently issued Department Order No. 238 Series of 2023, formally known as the “Rules on the Administration and Enforcement of Labor Standards Pursuant to Article 128 of the Labor Code of the Philippines, as Renumbered, and Republic Act No. 11058“.


ECOP Governor Butch Guerrero opened the event by mentioning that ECOP regularly conducts learning sessions on new policies, standards, and regulations issued by government partners for its commitment to advocate for a policy environment that is conducive for entrepreneurship, business expansion, and job creation. He also reiterated that it is the Confederation’s duty to “capacitate and support employers in compliance as this is the foundation of business sustainability that fosters inclusive economic growth.”


To provide an in-depth discussion of the issuance and its proper implementation, DOLE Bureau of Working Conditions Director Atty. Alvin Curada presented the salient features of the Department Order to remind employers of the duties and responsibilities of DOLE in terms of administration and enforcement of labor standards, and encourage them to abide to the new set of guidelines with precise understanding.


Esteemed guests representing various industries shared their perspectives on the recent issuance. For the tourism industry, Philippine Hotel Owners Association (PHOA) Executive Director Mr. Benito “Bong” Bengzon Jr. said that the hotel industry is still in their recovery period and haven’t gotten back their pre-pandemic turnout. However, he emphasized that they would be supportive of the initiatives of DOLE and will abide by the new regulations.


As for Gruppo EMS, adhering to General Labor Standards promotes higher productivity which leads to increased profitability and corporate sustainability. Thus, Director of People Department (HR) Ms. Trinidad “Ida” C. Binua highlighted the importance of compliance to regulations as a matter of upholding basic human rights and treating employees with dignity and respect. She also urged employers to ensure that their organizations operate ethically and sustainably.


Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry – Antipolo City Chapter President Mr. Bryant Kim An said that most of the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) finds compliance difficult, adding that they lack understanding of the laws and has a hard time figuring out what to do on instances that DOLE visits their business. Mr. An has been managing their family businesses in retail, construction, real estate, and F&B. Awareness raising and laymanizing of these regulations will be very helpful for these enterprises.


Before the forum ended, Ms. Nenette Fernando briefly presented the overview of the Digital Self-Assessment Checklist or DSAC which was devised to help employers comply with basic labor standards with ease. As part of ECOP’s initiative for responsible business conduct, the DSAC is an accessible resource tool that supports companies to identify, assess, and address gaps in their business operations, and be able to eliminate or avoid such risks before they get inspected by DOLE.


Don’t miss the chance to be updated on the recent labor policy issuances.


Stay tuned for our next ELUs.