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The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE)

DOLE issues rules on flexible work arrangement

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The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) issued supplemental guidelines on flexible work arrangement and other remedial measures for the private sector in response to government's stringent social distancing measures to control the COVID-19 spread in Metro Manila.

"As better alternative to outright termination of the services of the employees or the total closure of the establishments, flexible work arrangements referred to under Labor Advisory No. 09 Series of 2020, including, but not limited to, other work arrangements, such as telecommuting, work from home, reduction of workday/hours, rotation of workers and forced leaves, are hereby reiterated and highly encouraged in establishments that continue to operate," the DOLE advisory signed by Secretary Silvestre Bello III read.

However, Bello in a TV interview assured that government is ready to assist workers who will be laid off due to the community quarantine through the emergency employment program.

"Those who will lose their jobs like waiters and bellboys will be unemployed for at least a month because hotels and restaurants will have to reduce staff. This is where the Department of Labor comes in, similar to what we did in Boracay, where the agency employed 19,000 workers who lost their jobs or six months," he said. 

The memorandum further read, "All manufacturing, retail and service establishments are advised to remain in operation during the community quarantine period, providing that social distancing and other safety and health measures are strictly observed."

"The leaves of absence during the community quarantine period shall be charged against the workers' existing leave credits, if any. Remaining unpaid leaves during said period may be covered and be subject to the conditions provided in the DOLE's proposed COVID-19 Adjustments Measures Program," it further said.

To recall, workers from outside Metro Manila and nearby provinces such as Bulacan, Cavite, Rizal and Laguna will still be allowed to enter and leave the region despite the implementation of a community quarantine. They only need to show their ID or certification of employment issued by their company to be allowed through health security checkpoints.

"Residents of nearby cities and/or municipalities outside the National Capital Region who work in Metro Manila shall be allowed to report for work provided that they present proof of employment and residency in checkpoints," the memorandum added.

Self-employed workers shall be allowed to travel to and from the NCR if they present proof of business or economic activity during inspections.

Also, upon presentation of a delivery receipt with address of the recipient, those delivering food, raw materials, and other goods shall have access in the region.

Meanwhile, all healthcare facilities shall be fully operational and their employees shall be allowed to move from Metro Manila to other regions and vice versa.


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