DOLE’s Department Order No. 118-12 Series of 2012 mandates a fixed and performance based compensation scheme in the public bus transport industry, a novel scheme which drastically changes an age-old commission-based pay practice.
According to Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz, the fixed componentconsists of an amount mutually agreed upon by the owner/operator and the driver/conductor, which shall not be lower than the minimum wage while theperformance-based component shall be based on the safety and business performance such as ridership, revenues/profitability, and other related parameters.
DOLE hopes that by improving the compensation and working condition of bus drivers and conductors, road accidents and traffic violations due to jostling among bus drivers for passengers, will be reduced.
NWPC Executive Director Ciriaco A. Lagunzad III explained that the NWPC is mandated by the law to fix and determine the applicable minimum wage, not only on regional and provincial level, but also on industry level.
The benefits include 13th month pay, holiday pay, rest day, overtime pay, nightshift differential, retirement pay, service incentive leave, maternity, paternity, and parental leave, and other leaves mandated under the Magna Carta for Women.
Also, they will be entitled to Pag-IBIG Fund, PhilHealth, Employees’ Compensation Law, Social Security System (SSS), and other social welfare benefits, the Department Order states.
Meanwhile, the NWPC will issue the operational guidelines to implement the compensation scheme including the formula to be used by bus companies. Companies may submit their proposed compensation scheme to respective Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board on or before March 31, 2011.
Also, the safety and health of bus drivers and conductors, the Bureau of Working Conditions (BWC) and the Occupational Safety and Health Center (OSHC) will issue a Safety and Health Manual for the Bus Industry which will be implemented and promoted by the operators.
The Technical Educational and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) will provide training, assessment and certification to ensure drivers have the knowledge and skills in driving and basic troubleshooting. The certificate from TESDA is one of the requirements in getting Certificates of Public Convenience from the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board.
In the first six months but not later than one year from the effectivity, the provisions in this D.O. shall be liberally construed to enable compliance by the bus companies.
The D.O. was published on 17 January 2012 at The Philippine Star.