House approves Media workers’ welfare bill

The House of Representatives has overwhelmingly approved on third reading a bill providing enhanced protection, security, and benefits for media workers.

With 218 affirmative votes, zero negative vote, and no abstention, the chamber passed on final reading House Bill 8140 or the proposed Media Workers’ Welfare Act.

The bill aims to ensure that media workers shall, at the minimum, be paid the wages, allowances, and benefits provided by law to workers.

Media workers shall be covered by the Social Security System, the Home Development Mutual Fund or the Pag-IBIG Fund, and the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. upon employment.

Employers shall provide additional insurance coverage to media workers, including death benefit of P200,000, disability benefit of P200,000, and medical insurance benefit of P100,000.

It also guarantees security of tenure to media workers after the probationary work period of six months of continuous work.

The measure mandates the Department of Labor and Employment as the agency in charge of monitoring compliance with its provisions.

There will also be a News Media Tripartite Council that shall serve as link among stakeholders, provides a platform where media workers and employers can agree upon mutually beneficial policies that will promote the interests of the media industry, and serve as an avenue to express their aspirations, discuss their programs, or settle conflicts. 

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