EXECUTION IS KEY
1. COVID-19 IS NOT A JOKE
This strain of COVID-19 is very dangerous AND contagious.
I know, I had it —- Mine was mild and I was in bed for 4-5 days. No appetite, and EXTREME fatigue. Hindi makabangon. Tulog lang ng tulog. Developed pneumonia. It hurt.
Very nakahawa. ENTIRE FAMILIES ANG TIRA.
Sa staff ko now, 7 sila sa pamilya. 6 ang positive except si nanay. Isa namatay si tita.
Sa pinsan ng asawa ko, yung niligawan niya, hinawaan siya. Nagkaroon siya ng COVID-19 same time as me.
Yung niligawan niya, BUONG PAMILYA nagka COVID-19 —- nanay, tatay, magkakapatid. Yung tatay na ICU. Dahil sa yayang nag rest day.
Many of my friends, people I know —- hindi lang sa news —- have caught COVID-19. Many profile photos on my wall are black with their relatives dying.
I personally know 2 people who died from it 2 weeks ago.
These four strains are faster than the strain last year. Symptoms come out within 3-5 days. If you get hospitalized within the 5 days, death comes within the 6-8th day vs last year’s COVID-19 na 2 weeks pa bago mamatay.
Walang hospital available over the last month. Medicine is pahirapan ang kuha if any.
One cost ₱28,000 a shot daw. And if you can’t find a hospital or medicine AND develop severe symptoms, chances are, 50/50 you will die.
This is not a drill.
ONCE COVID-19 ENTERS BARRACKS, LAHAT NAGHAHAWAAN. CLOSE QUARTERS KASI.
If one is positive, everyone who talked to him or was in the same room as him is a CLOSE CONTACT. Everyone must be in 14 day quarantine —- No work, no pay.
This means, everyone is ISOLATED. They are reported to the barangay. Buong barracks mo, report sa barangay. Either dadalhin sa govt quarantine facility or kulong sa barracks. Walang makalabas.
Here’s the clincher – DOLE Labor Advisory No. 4, Series of 2020 PROTECTS owner from spending when this happens:
A. If you are quarantined due to your being a close contact or being COVID-19 positive, it’s no work no pay unless you used your EARNED leave credits (Source: DOLE Labor Advisory No. 4, Series of 2020).
B. If you are CONFIRMED COVID-19 POSITIVE, the only financial liability an employer has IF may SSS and Philhealth ang tao is to help the staff APPLY fot SSS Sickness Benefit and EC Benefit. Tulungan lang sa Philhealth papeles para makakuha ng Philhealth.
IMPORTANT: Pero wala si employer kailangang ilabas na pera. Ni isang koseng wala. Lahat gracia or ayuda, pero hindi pwedeng i-demanda.
3. DRAFT WRITTEN DOCUMENT LETTING PEOPLE STAY IN BARRACKS
Given the above facts, I would draft a document, explaining the above. I would write about the danger of COVID-19 now and MAKE IT VERY CLEAR the consequences of getting one.
IMPORTANT: Never offer any benefit unless there is mutual agreement on the conditions on getting such benefit AND if such conditions are followed, the agreement should also contain steps on what to do in penalizing or disciplining the offender.
Make it clear if the barracks get COVID-19 due to one person, operations are shut and it’s no work no pay for 14 days by law. And the only thing employer is liable for is to process their SSS and Philhealth.
Make it about the COLLECTIVE. Talk about hawaan. That it’s not about just one employee but for all.
4. MAKE SURE YOUR AGREEMENT CONTAINS CONDITIONS KUNG:
A. Kung ayaw mag sign?
Put them on Floating Status for up to 6 months and wait till the COVID-19 pandemic subsides. Again, hindi siya forced. Pero ayaw, pauwiin na lang and put on floating status for max 6 months.
Report to DOLE na temporarily suspended ang work nila: https://reports.dole.gov.ph. During this COVID-19 pandemic, no need for 30 days. Pwedeng apply to inform both DOLE and the staff.
IMPORTANT: If staff is direct hired, floating status cannot exceed 6 months. If you want to extend for another 6 months, you must get employee’s written consent. If the staff is agency-hired, they must be redeployed by the agency within 3 months.
B. Gusto mag-stay pero after a while, wants to go home to their families.
Same banana —- Let them leave.
Put this in the agreement: They can always go home to family, pero if they do, they cannot as easily come back without fulfilling the condition —- They must be confirmed to be COVID-19 negative.
Stay in hotel quarantine is a must for 5 days to monitor symptoms. Hotels cost ₱1500 a night with food na yon. A negative RT-PCR costs ₱3800. These you cannot charge to staff (DOLE Labor Advisory No. 18, Series of 2020). So if the company cannot afford the hotel/isolation prior to return, baka no choice but to have them continue floating status for 6 months.
Report to DOLE na temporarily suspended ang work nila: https://reports.dole.gov.ph. During this COVID-19 pandemic, no need for 30 days. Pwedeng apply then inform. And yes, this is legal.
5. TALK TO THEM AND EXPLAIN. ONLY KEEP THOSE WHO VOLUNTARILY SIGN.
Iba din kasi ang human touch.
Kausapin ninyo silang lahat. Dapat ma explain ng maigi ang nakasulat sa papel. Listen to them as well. Try to convince them that this is a better decision to make, but NEVER force them.
Hindi sapilitan ang sign ng agreement.
6. BE STRICT IN THEM EXECUTING ABOUT THE AGREEMENT.
Kung ayaw mag sign and agree, you gotta remove them from the barracks. Kasi hindi pwedeng ipilit.
Apply them online na floating status sa DOLE via their ERS Page here.
Kung nag sign pero later on, gusto umuwi sa pamilya kasi super na miss: Pwedeng pwede —- As I said, pwede lumabas ng barracks to spend time with family, but once they do, hindi sila makabalik muna. Floating muna sila for a max of 6 months.
Strictly, hindi sila pwedeng ibalik sa trabaho unless certain conditions are met —- they must be confirmed not positive, para no hawaan sa barracks. Apply them online na floating status sa DOLE —-
We had one building guard na umuwi kasi gustong makita ang pamilya DAW. No worries, hindi na lang siya pinabalik muna. The rest of the guards adjusted.
After one week, guard na umuwi was begging to return to work. Hindi pwede kasi baka mahawa ang buong security team. Floating siya muna.
Implement the rules strictly. Hindi talaga pwedeng ibalik baka mahawa ang iba. When others saw how strict we implemented the rules, ayun, wala nang gusto umuwi.
Hindi sapilitan ang trabaho. Remember the good of the group is more important than one pasaway na employee. Maraming naghahanap ng work ngayon, kasi maraming walang pera, walang ayuda and walang trabaho. Napakahirap ngayon kumuha ng pera. Kahit nagpapautang, maxed out na. Baon ang tao sa utang.
Kaya it’s important to keep EVERYONE IN THE COMPANY working. Hindi pwedeng maghawaan. If one person cannot understand that this actions affect the group, please let him go and keep the group safe.
7. SWEETEN THE POT IN STAYING
Strongly suggest that you add the option of paying for rest days if they worked. So on 7th day, may option na magtrabaho but you have to PAY PREMIUM if they did so. Pwede naman sa DOLE na magtrabaho sa rest day basta BAYARAN NG TAMA.
If they chose to rest, walang bayad. Huwag din ninyong utusan.
Take care of those who choose to stay and keep the group safe. Sa building namin, may temporart allowance/hazard pay (which is not mandated by law). Food is provided. We thank them for staying regularly. Ganun.
So ayun, wala kaming naging issue din sa hawaan. And kahit na gustong umuwi, people choose to stay. Kasi they understand why they are staying —- to earn from family and to ensure safety of group.
Nope it is not.
As I said, walang sapilitan. Do not force them to stay, sign the agreement. The only thing yo can do is set your company guidelines, explain it to the employee, and if they don’t want to agree, do not force.
Pero once gusto nang bumalik, follow the agreement you mutually signed on.
As I said, EXECUTION IS KEY. Good luck!