Senatorial bets with labor agenda: Dissecting the platforms

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Despite the country’s much praised economic growth, lack of decent jobs and meager wages continue to hound Filipino workers. Based on the latest jobs data, nearly 3 million Filipinos are unemployed while one out of five employed workers are looking for additional jobs to augment meager incomes. Average daily wage in the country is only at P317.44, or roughly $8/ day. Such dire situation is forcing nearly 5,000 Filipinos to leave the country and look for work overseas every day.

Not surprisingly, several 2013 senatorial candidates are using key labor issues as springboard for their electoral bids. But how do we separate those who have genuine labor solutions from those who are merely using the jobs mantra to secure a job in the Senate?

Yardstick should not be mere inclusion of jobs in the platform, but the strategic positioning of employment generation in the overall economic agenda. In other words, what kind of jobs do they want to create? Business process outsourcing jobs? Manufacturing jobs? Informal jobs?

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