Mandatory Typhoon Code of Practice in Offices and Business Establishments Pushed In Congress

A law mandating the creation of a Typhoon Code of Practice in every office and establishment has been filed in Congress by DIWA (Democratic Independent Workers’ Association) Party-list Representative Emmeline Aglipay – Villar. House Bill 5358, entitled “Typhoon Code of Practice Act,” aims to protect the workers and employers from the chaotic situation often brought about by the unpredictability of typhoons which exacerbates the exposure of the workers from the dangers posed by typhoons.

Under this proposed bill, business establishments and offices are required to create a Typhoon Code of Practice which shall include, among others, an organized warning system which determines when non-essential employees shall not be required to report for work in order to avoid the unnecessary risk of putting them in danger. “As our nation has always been beset by storms, with both mighty gales and heavy rains imperilling persons and property, the safety and health of persons during these times should remain the highest priority of the State and the employers,” explained Diwa Party-list Rep. Emmeline Y. Aglipay – Villar, the bill’s proponent. “Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for private business enterprises to demand from their employees to almost literally swim through flooded roads and to brave the highest warning signals just so that they can report for work even when classes in schools and work in government offices have already been called off,” she added.

A vocal defender of the Filipino workers’ interests, Rep. Aglipay – Villar said that another reason she came up with this proposed law was that she wanted to reduce the consistent confusion, miscommunication, and inconvenience during typhoons, and minimize its attendant dangers without unnecessarily impairing business operations. She explained, “In the interest of the common good, this bill will require employers to systematize their procedure during typhoons while retaining the flexibility of these procedures depending on one’s industry or geographical location.”