The Work Stoppage Order dated November 24, 2016 was issued by the DOLE Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III in view of the fatal accidents occurred in Luzon since October 2016 which claimed the lives of five people and injured several others.
As such and with the projected increase in production during the holidays, Siaton explained that “the Department declared the existence of grave and imminent danger to the health and safety of workers in workplaces involved in the production and sale of pyrotechnics and firecrackers thus, this issuance.”
Siaton said that the assistance of the PNP, BFP and LGU Iloilo City is vital in the implementation of the said Order since establishments engaged in these trades apply for permits to operate and sell from the said agencies.
She clarified that the role of the DOLE is to look into the workplace’s compliance on the Occupational Safety and Health Standards (OSHS) and General Labor Standards (GLS) while the role of BFP and the PNP are to look into the company’s compliance on the requirements stated on their own guidelines.
She said that if during assessment/inspection the establishments will be found compliant with the standards or met the requirements of the three agencies they will send a recommendation to Secretary Bello for the lifting of the Work Stoppage Order in these establishments.
“This Order is general but its lifting is per establishment,” she added
To implement the Order, the group agreed to create a team to conduct and to fast track the assessment of identified establishments including the evaluation and recommendation for the lifting of the Order.
Supt. Candido of the BFP informed the group that the products are 80 per cent manufactured by now and the issue, which poses serious hazards and imminent danger to the public, would be on storage and selling. Thus, warehouses in Iloilo City which serve as storage areas will likely be inspected for compliance with the requirements of the aforesaid agencies.
DOLE OIC-Regional Director Salome O. Siaton (3rd from left) spearheaded an inter-agency meeting with Iloilo City Fire Station Supt. Jerry P. Candido (4th from right), RCSU 6 Supt. Jomil John Trio (2nd from right) and LGU-Iloilo City Norman Tabud (2nd from left) to tackle the Work Stoppage Order issued for establishments engaged in the manufacture and sell of pyrotechnics and firecrackers.
Meanwhile, another meeting was held on November 28, 2016 with representatives of the PNP and BFP from the provinces of Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Iloilo and Guimaras and DOLE Field Office heads to discuss the implementation of the said order in the provinces.
Each province created and identified the members of the inter-agency team to look into companies’ compliance with the various standards. The teams immediately met alongside DOLE Field Office heads and discussed possible coordinated actions to implement the Order and to conduct assessment/inspection of establishments in their respective provinces.
With the enforcement of this Order, is expected that there will be displacement of workers in the region. The DOLE 6 is thus ready to provide assistance through the provision of livelihood to affected workers duly identified and validated by the teams.