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21 Mar 2020

Kimmy Baraoidan & Maricar Cinco, Philippine Daily Inquirer

Philippines: Minimum wage factory workers are allegedly forced to take leaves without pay after COVID-19 lockdown shutters factories

"Lockdown shutters 700 Luzon factories", 21 March 2020

Uncertainty is hanging over the heads of tens of thousands of minimum wage workers in hundreds of factories producing car parts, electronics, and other industrial and consumer goods in Luzon, which have suspended operations due to the outbreak of the new coronavirus disease (COVID-19).


...703 companies have suspended operations, according to Peza.

In Cavite alone, 309 companies had temporarily shut down, affecting 86,549 workers....


Some of the companies have provided financial assistance to their workers but others sent their employees on forced leaves without pay.


Joseph Gacosta, Cavite provincial director of the Department of Labor and Employment, said some of the factories have advanced the P5,000 assistance promised by the government to displaced workers, which the companies will later reimburse.


...[T]he country's three largest cement manufacturers temporarily shut down their factories in Luzon, including their distribution operations.


...Republic Cement, also announced the suspension of factory operations and dispatch from Luzon, but its plants in Visayas and Mindanao will continue to run.

Holcim said it implemented a work-from-home arrangements for employees in its Taguig head office and others in Luzon.

Republic said the company was "one with the nation in the fight against COVID-19 and we look forward to bouncing back as a safer and stronger republic."

[Companies also mentioned in the report are EMI-Yazaki Corp., Daegyoung Apparel Inc., House Technologies Industries, Wu Kong Singapore, and Cemex]