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‘Work at home’ law to ease traffic – Palace

DESIREE Tapuz, 30, works at home, tending to her ‘sari-sari’ or neighborhood convenience store and online business while taking care of her young child. Many Filipinos like her are expected to work at home now that President Duterte has signed the Telecommuting Act. (Rio Leonelle Deluvio)

DESIREE Tapuz, 30, works at home, tending to her ‘sari-sari’ or neighborhood convenience store and online business while taking care of her young child. Many Filipinos like her are expected to work at home now that President Duterte has signed the Telecommuting Act. (Rio Leonelle Deluvio)

Malacañang yesterday lauded the signing of the Telecommuting Act by President Duterte and said it will help ease the traffic gridlock in Metro Manila.

In a statement, presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo lauded lawmakers for passing the bill.

Panelo said that the law shows that the government catches up with the changing times.

“Times are changing and we have seen how the government responds and adapts to different work environments,” Panelo said. “We laud our lawmakers for the timely passage of RA No. 11165 since telecommuting as a work arrangement is fast becoming the new norm with the Filipino labor market starting to open up with alternative avenues in view of computer technologies,” he added.

“With its full implementation, we are optimistic that this arrangement can also contribute in easing the traffic conditions in Metro Manila and in other urban areas.”

Panelo said the law signed last Dec. 20 will give fair treatment to telecommuting employees in the private sector who can now work from home or any place outside the employers’ premises, and still be given the same treatment and entitlements as those employees physically working at the offices.

“We are confident that the Department of Labor and Employment will perform thoroughly as it leads the government put into action the directives of the law,” he said.

“PRRD’s signing of the Telecommuting Act is indeed a recognition of an emerging and innovative Filipino workforce.”
Under the law, employers may offer a telecommuting program which must observe labor laws and include compensable work hours, minimum number of work hours, overtime, rest days, and entitlement to leave benefits.

Workers must receive a rate of pay, including overtime and night shift differential, and other benefits not lower that those provided in applicable laws and collective bargaining agreements.

Employers must also ensure that workers will have the right to rest periods, regular holidays, and special non-working days and have the same workload and performance standards as those of comparable workers at the office.

Telecommuting workers will also have access to training and career development opportunities; receive training on the technical equipment at their disposal, and the characteristics and conditions of telecommuting; have collective rights as the workers at the employer’s premises, and shall not be barred from communicating with workers’ representatives. (Argyll Geducos)

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