In the absence of any recuperation workers in textiles, clothing and leather goods industries in the Philippines are afraid of losing their jobs over the next six months. Owing to the COVID-19 pandemic more than 20,000 employees were laid-off.
On 10 June, the tripartite council of the apparel and garment industry convened to assess the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on the fashion and wardrobe sector in the Philippines. Massive job displacement, income loss and reduced working hours due to shortage and cancelation of orders are pressing issues.
According to employers’ organization Confederation of Wearable Exporters of the Philippines, more than 30 percent of employees at their member companies have been retrenched due to factory closures as many contracts and orders have been canceled and financial liquidity is running low.
Unions demand that government and employers put in place effective and reasonable steps to avoid further job losses and to protect the income of the workers. The government needs to expand income security and assistance to the workforce affected, especially for those who remain temporarily unemployed. The unions also stress the need to observe safety and health protocols to ensure a safe workplace.