Manifestation on 3rd Reading Approval of Minimum Wage Hike Bill (SBN-2534)

Mr.  President, my dear colleagues:

Allow me to share portions of the famous Ramon Magsaysay credo: It says, and I quote—

 “I believe that government starts at the bottom and moves upward, for government exists for the welfare of the masses of the nation.”

“I believe that he who has less in life should have more in law.”

“I believe that the little man is fundamentally entitled to a little bit more food in his stomach, a little more cloth in his back, and a little more roof over his head.”

Let it be said that this august chamber is responsive to the needs of our kababayans, especially on the back of rising cost of living and soaring prices of basic commodities. Thus, your Senate has proposed to hike by One hundred pesos (P100) the wage of all minimum wage earners in the private sector.

Ang panukalang ito ay magbibigay benipisyo sa tinatayang 4.2 milyong minimum wage earners, gayundin ang iba pang manggagawa na maaapektuhan ng wage distortions—isang probisyon na isinulong ni Senate President Migz Zubiri, ang ating co-sponsor.

Let us not underestimate the ripple effect of the Senate’s collective action. A higher minimum wage does not only impact the lives of those directly affected but reverberates throughout our communities, stimulating local economies, and ensuring that people would have more money in their pockets to meet their basic needs.

Mr. President, definitely, some may argue that implementing such measures could impose hardships on businesses and impede economic growth. However, we should bear in mind that a flourishing economy relies on the vitality of its workforce, who are considered the lifeblood of enterprises. At dapat nating pangalagaan at unahin ang interes ng ating mga manggagawa.

Nagpapasalamat po ako sa ating mga kasamahan sa bulwagang ito na nag-co-sponsor at co-author para sa pangkalahatang benepisyo ng minimum wage earners, kabilang sina Senate President Zubiri, Senate President Pro-Tempore Loren Legarda, Majority Leader Joel Villanueva, Senator Bong Go, Senator Bong Revilla, Senator Nancy Binay, Senator Bato Dela Rosa, Senator Robin Padilla, Senator Risa Hontiveros, Senator Pia Cayetano, Senator Raffy Tulfo, at Senator Grace Poe.

Muli, maraming, maraming salamat po.