The campaign of PSI affiliates in the Philippines to ratify ILO Convention 190 or the Convention on Violence and Harassment in the World of Work took a positive and conclusive turn as Philippine President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. signed and ratified ILO Convention 190 which was received at the Senate on Nov. 6, 2023.
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PSI Philippines affiliates together with other global union federations are pleased with this development which shows the commitment of the current administration to take steps to protect workers from violence and harassment at work. Since 2019, Philippine unions have been campaigning for its ratification. Most recently, a joint press conference was held on Sept. 27, 2023, urging President Marcos Jr. to ratify ILO C. 190.
The Philippine Senate has the power to concur any international treaty or law that the President signs. A two-thirds (2/3) positive vote of all Senators is needed to confirm the concurrence. Once concurred, the Philippines shall be the first country in Asia and the 37th country in the world to ratify ILO C. 190.
ILO Convention 190 protects the workers, regardless of their employment status, from violence and harassment including gender-based discrimination in the workplace. It ensures that awareness-raising campaigns against violence and harassment are in place. The Convention also provides a framework for companies to create work environments that are free from violence and harassment, grounded on the principles of dignity and respect. ILO C 190 resonates with the administration’s provision of protection for all workers regardless of gender, age, sex, race, beliefs, and abilities, who are free from violence and harassment in whatever form to achieve a safe space. Once the ratification is concurred, existing and future Philippine national laws and policies must be aligned with the true meaning and spirit of the international instrument.