LATEST WAGES SLIDE TO ONE-THIRD OF COST TO LIVE DECENTLY

Despite the recent round of wage hikes, daily minimum wages have actually slid to only 34% of the amount needed for decent living from 46% in January 2007, according to independent think-tank IBON Foundation.

Data from the National Wages and Productivity Commission (NWPC) of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) show that on the national level, the average daily minimum wage, including the new increases, is just 34% of the average family living wage (FLW). The FLW is defined as the minimum amount needed for a family of six members to meet their daily food and non-food needs plus 10% allocation for savings.

In Metro Manila, the new daily minimum wage of P382 is 38% of the family living wage of P871, while in areas outside the capital the average daily wages are just 29% of the average FLW.

These figures highlight how far wages have been overtaken by price increases and how insufficient wage increases given by Regional Wage Boards are. These also underscore the urgent need for lawmakers to approve a decent legislated across-the-board wage hike as soon as Congress resumes next month.

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