DMCI found with 8 labor law 'deficiencies' – DOLE
MANILA, Philippines – The contractor of the controversial 46-story Torre de Manila, D. M. Consunji Inc Homes (DMCI) did not comply with labor standards for its workers, the labor department said on July 3.
Labor inspectors found at least 8 labor law deficiencies – including hazardous work areas, absence of a full-time doctor or dentist, lack of protective equipment for the workers, among others.
They gave DMCI at least 2 months to correct these.
DMCI is under fire for its construction of the controversial 46-story Torre de Manila, dubbed by heritage conservatives as the "national photobomber" for getting in the way of what used to be a scenic landscape behind the monument of national hero Jose Rizal.
According to the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, the project "destroys or significantly alters" the view of the historic Rizal Shrine.
DMCI was assessed by engineers Alejandro Delfin Fresnosa and Eduvigis Acero, both labor law compliance officers (LCCOs), according to a Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) report. (READ: Metro Manila needs more LLCOs)
At the time, the LLCOs documented that DCMI had:
- no full time physician and dentist for 500 employees;
- insufficient bed capacity for clinic;
- with imminent danger/situation area;
- no railing on 36th floor which poses a risk to falling and tripping;
- worn-out personal protective equipment for workers;
- non-submission of monthly summary of safety and health meetings/agreements;
- no policies and guidelines for HIV/AIDS, TB, Hepatitis B prevention; and
- no drug-free policy and program.
Under the LLCS, a company under assessment has 30 days to correct its general labor standards (GLS) deficiencies and 90 days for its occupational safety and health standards deficiencies.
Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz ordered the strict monitoring of "the implementation of the corrective plans of action."
The Supreme Court however temporarily stopped Torre de Manila's construction last June 16, displacing 425 workers.
Re-assignment of displaced workers
Baldoz said 209 of the 425 displaced workers from the Torre de Manila construction site have already been re-assigned to other ongoing DMCI projects.
In particular, the freeze in the building's construction has displaced 154 masons, 93 carpenters, 132 laborers, 13 engineers, as well as 33 other administrative, motor pool, and line and grade workers, according to DOLE Metro Manila Director Alex Avila's report transmitted to Baldoz.
"The DMCI, through Tristan Simbulan, custodian of the company’s Asset Management Group, has coordinated with us on the plight of its workers and assured us the company is re-assigning the 425 workers to its other projects to prevent possible displacement," the report read.
No more workers save for guards are posted at the Torre de Manila construction site, Avila added, citing a report from a DOLE Metro Manila quick reaction team.
Sub-contractors to undergo LLCS
In March, two of DMCI's subcontractors were also assessed, with partition/division construction company Gentry Specialty Building Solution found to have no deficiencies.
Re-bar specialist Dumduma Construction and Trading Corporation, however, was found to have 5 GLS deficiencies. These include:
- failure to present employment records of 14 of its 22 employees
- failure to remit employee premiums for SSS, PhilHealth, and Pag-IBIG
- underpayment of minimum wage
- non-payment of night shift premium pay; and
- lack of anti-sexual harassment policy and program.
Avila also said that 10 other DMCI sub-contractors have been endorsed to various DOLE regional offices for LLCS assessment. – Rappler.com