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Include salary increases in 2018 budget – solons

8 July 2017 No Comment

ACT Teachers Representatives Antonio Tinio and France Castro are concerned that salary increases for teachers and other government workers are not included in the proposed 2018 budget. Both solons urged President Duterte to make good his earlier pronouncements by including substantial pay hikes.

“The Philippine Development Plan for 2017-2022 is silent as to salary increases for government personnel, majority of whom are teachers and non-teaching staff. Two secretaries, including secretary Diokno who heads the Development Budget Coordination Committee which drafted the 2018 proposed budget, opposed pay hikes in government. This would mean that pay hikes in government are less likely to be found,” Castro said. “Despite this, salary increase for teachers and other government employees is one of the very first things that we will look for and pursue in President Duterte’s SONA and budget proposal.”

“This would be the first budget proposal that the Duterte administration created from scratch. With a P3.8T budget proposal and the Department of Education having the highest allocation, the Duterte administration is more than capable of providing teachers and other rank-and-file personnel significant change in their salaries instead of the loose change that they receive with EO 201 of the previous administration. If he remains true to his earlier pronouncements, that is,” Tinio said. “We reiterate our demand for P25,000 for Teacher 1 and P16,000 as minimum salary in government.”

“We maintain our support for the just and resounding call of teachers, non-teaching employees and other government workers for salary increase and benefits that would help them live decent lives,” Castro added.

Diokno during the 2017 budget deliberation said that substantial salary increases demanded by teachers are “too ambitious” while Briones recently claimed that teachers are “not underpaid.”

On the other hand, President Duterte in a speech last July 28, 2016 said that salary increase for teachers will be next after giving pay hikes for the military and police. “Itong increase of salaries, ang sunod ko mga teachers,” he promised.

“With today’s rising prices of basic goods and services, they need more than what we are giving them now,” Tinio added. The DBM is so quick and agressive in pushing for new taxes yet brands just demand for substantial salary increases as ‘too ambitious’.”

The solons joined protest action today in front of the Department of Education let by the Alliance of Concerned Teachers to demand for salary increase.

“We will continue to support and fight with the teachers and other government workers in their struggle for salary increase. We call on all teachers and government workers to unite and fight for their right for sufficient salaries and benefits in the coming State of the Nation Address of President Duterte,” Castro ended.###

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