The Unfair Labor Practices in Media
“Service for the people”, these words are usually being carried along by most television networks. A service that unlocks the awareness to the ill-governed and anomalies of the government, the window that shows how people live in sorrows and the juggler who entertains the people to relive the stress they’ve had in a day of hassle. Everything should’ve been in good place if only the people who are of big contribution to the success of the service were granted by something due to these works of them.
As I was reading through the posts of buhaymedia.wordpress.com, I realized how blind I was to the real world of the television networks. Of course, I could only see good about it because I was also fed only by good things about it. The journalists composed the media which is the watchdog or the fourth state and it’s their dedication and responsibility to bring forth and defend the rights of the masses and when we say masses it means the whole. But it seems that only a part of the whole is covered by it, according to the ex-GMA talent and a member of the Talents Association of GMA Network Inc. (TAG) Mike Manalaysay, “Kung kami mga journalist, pinagtatanggol namin ‘yung mga karapatan ng ibang tao, edi mas dapat din naming ipagtanggol ‘yung mga karapatan namin (Dangla, 2014).
In the Philstar Cebu Online News of May 17, 2014, the petition filed by the former talents of GMA Network’s Cebu station for certiorari was denied by the Special Eighteenth Division of the Court of Appeals (CA). It was filed against the network on November 7, 2005 for the unfair labor practice, illegal suspension, illegal dismissal and non-payment of labor benefits before the National Labor Relations Commission. But then, according to the NLRC and the Labor Arbiter, nothing exists such employer-employee relationship between GMA and the petitioners in the decision by Associate Justice Renato Francisco. CA said, “GMA is constrained by mandate of law to exercise some form of limited supervision over petitioners in order to ensure that this aspect of responsible broadcasting is not breached, GMA shows can be watched “indiscriminately by various of people”. (Bernal, 2014)
Last November 10, 2014, over 100 talents of GMA who are also members of the newly-formed Talents Association of GMA (TAG) work together in a position paper stating most of them rendered years in the network but haven’t become regular employees. According to Rappler report by Buena Bernal, “They (TAG) argued that they should be qualified for regularization and accompanying benefits because they have been rendering work that is “necessary and desirable” in the ordinary course of the network’s business.”
With these, GMA provided an alternative contract called Project Employment Contract (PEC). Under this contract, the same benefits are offered just like of that a regular employee, such as Pag-Ibig, PhilHealth and SSS but would expire in a year.
TAG President Christian Cabaluna believed that it would only mean small benefits such as inclusion in company raffles and free service in the company clinic and provision of hazard pay. He expressed his beliefs towards the issue in an interview with Media Newser Philippines and said,
“Talents are considered to be the second-class citizens of the network,”
“We can’t be given anything fair and equal that the regular employees are
getting.” The members of TAG were not satisfied with the provisions of PEC, so they pursued the case against the media giant. But GMA 7 decided to pre-terminate the contracts of all talents on December this year for them to sign the new contract: the PEC. Due to this development, TAG moved the case from regularization case to constructive dismissal. (Dangla, 2014)
Chloe Garcera-Ben has worked for almost 13 years in GMA Network Inc. (GMA 7), one of the three biggest media conglomerates in the Philippines and last month (October, 2014) the network did not renew her...
References: Bernal, B. (2014, November 19). GMA-7 talents risk losing jobs over regularization plight. Retrieved January 7, 2015, from Rappler: http://www.rappler.com/nation/75502-gma-talents-labor-regularization
Buhaymedia (2014, November 24) Talents association of GMA (TAGS)’s reaction to GMA network’s official statement about labor malpractice [Web log post] Retrieved from https://buhaymedia.wordpress.com/2014/11/24/news-tags-reaction-to-gma-networks- official-statement-about-labor-malpractice/
Buhaymedia (2014, December 15) TAG’s reply to GMA network’s position paper [Web log post] Retrieved from https://buhaymedia.wordpress.com/2014/12/15/news-tags-reply-to- gma-networks-position-paper-december-2014/
Dangla, D. (2014, November 10) GMA-7 talents fight against unfair labor practice [Web log repost from Manila Today] Retrieved from https://buhaymedia.wordpress.com/2014/11/11/news-gma-7-talents-fight-against-unfair- labor-practice/
MediaNewserPhilippinesTeam (2014, November 22) GMA-7 talents protest against the network over regularization [Web log post] Retrieved from https://buhaymedia.wordpress.com/2014/11/23/news-gma-7-talents-protest-against-the- network-over-regularization/
Olea, R. V. (2014, December 12) New contract same ‘exploitative terms [Web log repost from bulatlat.com] Retrieved from https://buhaymedia.wordpress.com/2014/12/13/news-new- contract-same-exploitative-terms/
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