By Ernie Reyes
MANILA — The government should widely disseminate the presidential order that employees who will get jabbed during the three-day national vaccination drive shall not be marked absent, Sen. Joel Villanueva said.
Villanueva, chair of the Senate labor committee, called on the Department of Labor and Employment and the Civil Service Commission to come up with clear guidelines for workers in both private and public sectors who will be getting inoculated on the dates of the national vaccination holidays.
If the government wants a “high turnout,” it must tell workers that time spent in getting jabbed is tantamount to a “paid vaccination leave,” Villanueva explained.
“Sabihin po natin sa lahat ng empleyado na ang ‘no work, no pay’ ay hindi in effect kung ikaw ay magpapabakuna anumang araw mula Nobyembre 29 hanggang Disyembre 1,” Villanueva said.
“Ayon po mismo sa atas ng Pangulo, ang vaccination card ay nagsisilbi pong excuse slip,” Villanueva said.
Under Duterte’s Proclamation No. 1253, employees and workers of the government and private sector who will participate in the vaccination drive shall not be considered absent from their work, as long as they present their proof of vaccination to their employers.
Considering the time that will be spent in commuting to vaccination centers and queuing there, plus the post-inoculation monitoring time, “it would be better for employers to give their workers a day off,” he said.
“The bottom line is that getting the vaccine should not lead to loss of pay,” Villanueva said. “Workers should not be made to choose between getting a vaccine or putting food on the table.” (ai/mtvn)