Mario Fetalino

Eddie Garcia Law signed

May 28, 2024 Mario Fetalino Jr. 90 views

LEGENDARY actor Eddie Garcia didn’t die in vain. Just recently, President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. has signed a law stemming from ‘Manoy’s’ demise.

Signed on May 24, Republic Act 11996 or the “Eddie Garcia Law” seeks protection and ensures the welfare of workers in the movie and television industry.

Under the law, the workers shall be protected by their employers or principal in the workplace. The law provides for the implementation of work hours, wages and other wage-related benefits, social security and welfare benefits, basic necessity, health and safety, working conditions and standards, and insurance.

The protection of the movie and television workers should also be in line with the Labor Code of the Philippines or Presidential Decree No. 442 as amended, and Republic Act No. 11058 or the “Act Strengthening Compliance with Occupational Safety and Health Standards and Providing Penalties for Violations” and other applicable laws.

The new law has taken into account the gravity of the accident that caused the death of Garcia while filming on the set. It now mandates that the worker and the employer or principal shall execute an agreement or an employment contract in a language or dialect understood by both parties before the commencement of service.

“No agreement or employment contract shall discriminate against a worker who has contracts or projects with other production outfits unless exclusivity is specified in the contract, nor shall any person perform any act involving preference based on race, color, descent, national or ethnic origin, or religion, which has the purpose or effect of nullifying the recognition, enjoyment, or exercise on an equal footing of any human right or fundamental freedom,” the law’s non-discriminatory provision stated.

With regard to hours of work, it states that they shall be based on the terms and conditions set in the agreement or employment contract and other stipulations signed with the employer or principal.

In terms of wages, the minimum wage of a worker shall not be less than the applicable minimum wage in the region where the worker is hired and wages shall be paid on time, as agreed upon in the contract, directly to the worker.

The employer or principal shall strictly adhere to the provisions of Republic Act No. 7610 as amended by Republic Act No. 9231 in the employment of minors.

All workers shall also be covered by and entitled to benefits provided by the Social Security System (SSS), the Home Development Mutual Fund or Pag-IBIG Fund, and the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth).

To ensure the health and safety of workers, the law mandates the employer or principal to strictly comply with the occupational safety and health standards provided in Republic Act No. 11058 and Section 25 of Republic Act No. 11036.

The law also calls for continued upskilling and reskilling of workers. It directs the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), in collaboration with relevant government agencies and various stakeholders, to develop and implement a system of continuing skills upgrading, reskilling, and training of workers in the movie and television industry.

Violators of any section of the law shall be fined up to P100,000 for the first offense; up to P200,000 for second offense; and up to P500,000 for the third and succeeding offenses.

“If the violation is committed by a corporation, trust or firm, partnership, association or any other entity, the fines shall be imposed upon the entity’s responsible officers, including, but not limited to, the executive producer, producer, production manager, and business unit manager,” it provided. |

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