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Deadly Eton Accident Opens Can of Worms About Abuse of Construction Workers

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Deadly Eton Accident Opens Can of Worms About Abuse of Construction Workers

 The 10 who fell to their death at Lucio Tan’s construction site were contractual workers. Subcontracting and labor-only contracting are a common practice in the construction industry, where workers are thoroughly exploited.

By MAUREEN A. HERMITANIO

Bulatlat.com
Related Story: Work Safety Group Urges Probe of Lucio Tan Firm for Death of 10 Workers
MANILA – The death yesterday of the 10 construction workers at the construction site of Eton Residences in Makati City could be regarded by some as a “freak accident” but is actually the result of the gross neglect of labor standards and workers’ rights, both by the employers and the Department of Labor and Employment (Dole).


An artist rendering of the Eton Residences in Makati, where the fatal accident took place.
The victims — Joel Abezilla, Celso Mabuting, Michael Tatlonghari, Kevin Mabunga, Borz Cristobal, Tisoy Perez, Vicente Piñion, William Bañez, Jaykie Legarda and Diocado Jeffrey — were all project-based employees of Arlo Aluminum and Glass Inc., the subcontractor of Eton Properties, the real estate arm of the Lucio Tan Group of Companies. The only surviving victim, Rowel Perez, is still fighting for his life at the Ospital ng Makati.

 The workers were installing glass windows on the 32nd floor when the gondola or construction elevator they were on gave way and sent them crashing to the seventh floor. Each of them was paid P260 a day to work at the dangerous construction site.
 
Underpaid, No Benefits

The work-related accident opened a can of worms about the operations of Eton Properties, one of the biggest real-estate developers in the country. It also reminded the public as well as authorities about the institutionalized violation of workers’ rights, labor standards and occupational health and safety regulations in the construction industry, considered by the International Labor Organization (ILO) as one of the most hazardous workplaces.

The P260 daily wage received by the construction workers at Eton is way below the government mandated P402 daily minimum wage in the National Capital Region. This doesn’t come as a surprise since construction workers at Eton are hired through a subcontractor, CE Construction Corp..... MORE

SourceBulatlat.com

URL: http://bulatlat.com/main/2011/01/28/deadly-eton-accident-highlights-neglect-of-labor-standards-and-workers-rights-in-philippines/

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