Labor groups lauded the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) for its advisory against the “no vaccine, no work” policy being planned by some employers.
One of them was the Associated Labor Unions (ALU), which expressed relief that DOLE is supporting workers.
“The employees are grateful for the prompt positive reaction from DOLE,” ALU spokesperson Alan Tanjusay said in a statement on Sunday.
He acknowledged that employees and DOLE are normally at odds over some policies but this time, he has “to convey the praise whenever it’s due.”
On Friday, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello 3rd issued Advisory 03-2021, or the Guidelines on the Administration of Covid-19 Vaccines in Workplaces.
Vaccination should not be made mandatory and those who refuse to be vaccinated should not be discriminated against, the advisory stated.
DOLE said workers cannot be terminated, refused promotion, or prohibited from entering the workplace just because they do not want to be inoculated.
The cost of vaccination shall also be paid by employers and not passed on, directly or indirectly, to employees.
Tanjusay believed the advisory, will also influence the ongoing “no jab, no job” raging debates that have been stoking pandemic industrial strife between workers and employers in the United States and in Europe.
“This Philippine government advisory saying workers cannot be coerced and discriminated against if they do not get vaccinated will serve as mold template in helping putting to an end the raging debate between business groups and workers there,” he said.