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Senate OKs flexitime, alternative work arrangements bill

MANILA – The Senate on Monday passed on third and final reading a bill allowing employers to voluntary adjust their employees’ working hour requirements.

Senate Bill No. 1571, or the “Alternative Working Arrangement Bill,” aims to amend Article 83 of the Labor Code of the Philippines.

Under this measure, employers are allowed to voluntarily adjust their workers’ 48 hours per week requirement without affecting the salary and benefits.

In his speech, Sen. Joel Villanueva thanked the members of the Senate for the speedy approval of the bill, which he sponsored earlier this year.

“Alam po kasi nila ang hirap nang pagpila sa MRT o paghahabol sa mga jeep at bus lalo na kapag rush hour samantalang pwede namang maiwasan ito sa pamamagitan ng mga alternative working arrangements tulad ng flexitime, compressed workweek, shift flexibility, flexi-holiday, rotating of workers, at iba pa,” he said.

Villanueva also reiterated employees are still entitled to their benefits like overtime pay and night shift differential, even after changes in their working arrangements.

“Bibigyang diin ko lang po ang nakasaad sa Senate Bill 1571: ang alternative working arrangement ay boluntaryo, 48 hours per week pa rin ang trabaho, at hindi mababawasan ang mga kasalukuyang benepisyong tinatanggap ng ating mga manggagawa gayundin ang karapatan nila sa overtime pay, night shift differential at iba pa,” he said.

Villanueva said he hopes the bill can promote work-life balance, improve worker efficiency and reduce transportation costs for employees and operating costs for employers.