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Barya lang! Castro scores paltry salary increase for teachers, other gov’t workers

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By JOHN CARLO M. CAHINHINAN

House Assistant Minority Floor Leader France Castro has scored the approval of the fifth package of the Salary Standardization (SSL-5) program for government personnel which allegedly provides “a measly increase to rank-and-file employees.”

Castro made the statement following the second reading approval of House Bill No. 5712 or the proposed SSL-5 on Monday, which is according to her only contains “scanty salary increase” provision for government workers including public teachers.

Castro stressed that the alleged “measly increase would only be consumed by the high prices due and income tax due to the TRAIN Law.”

“The proposed salary standardization law of 2019 will be implemented in four tranches, will only increase salaries of those under salary grade 1 by P483 in 2020, a P16 per day increase in the first tranche of implementation,” said Castro.

“Entry level teachers under salary grade 11 would only receive an increase of P1,562 in 2020, an additional of only P52 per day,” she added.

According to Castro, salary increase provision under HB 5712 is “not what our teachers and other government employees have been demanding from the government.”

“With the rising prices of basic goods due to the TRAIN :aw, the scanty increase in salaries provided by the proposed new standardization law will go to the higher prices of basic goods, income taxes and increased contributions in GSIS, PhilHealth and PAG-IBIG,” said Castro.

“Wala nang natira sa barat na itinaas sa kanilang mga sweldo. Kulang na nga sa panawagan na P30,000, hinati-hati pa sa loob ng apat na taon. Para sa mga simpleng manggagawa ng gobyerno, ano ang mabibili ng dagdag na P16 kada araw? Para naman sa mga pampublikong guro, ano ang mabibili ng P52 kada araw? Malayo sa substansiyal na dagdag sweldo na unang ipinangako ni Presidente Duterte ang panukalang ito” she added.

She said the Duterte administration cannot excuse a lack of budget for not providing for a substantial salary increase for government employees.

“It just has to prioritize substantially increasing salaries of teachers and other government employees and providing for adequate social services over militaristic policies that only vilifies and criminalize those fighting for their rights and benefits.”

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