Lawmaker seeks a 14-day mortuary leave for all employees

A senior lawmaker today urged the grant of a 14-day mortuary leave with full compensation to employees in the public and private sectors in the event of death of a first degree family member.

“By tradition, we always find a way to be with our families when a loved one passes away even if it means incurring absences from work,” Deputy Speaker Pablo P. Garcia said.

The Deputy Speaker is author of HB 3762 which had been pending with the Committee on Labor and Employment since December 2010.

“I am confident the 15th Congress could still give due course to this legislative initiative before our term ends next year,” the Cebu lawmaker said, adding that “this would enhance social responsibility on the part of employers.”

While the country’s workforce enjoys some forms of authorized leaves with full compensation such as maternity, paternity, hospitalization and vacation leaves, there is none available when a member of the immediate family passes away, Garcia pointed out.

“In times of joy and sorrow, we have our families to count on. We celebrate together every happy occasion and we stick together during difficult times, especially in the event of death of a family member,” the author said.

The bill grants a mortuary leave of 14 days with full compensation to employees of the private and public sectors in the event of death of a parent, child, spouse or sibling to enable them to mourn with their families and help out in laying the departed relative to rest, Garcia said.

“Employees need enough time to recover after the agonizing responsibility of attending to the embalming, wake and burial of the departed family member,” he added.

However, the measure also provides that any employee may avail of this leave for a maximum of four times during the duration of his employment.

The Secretary of Labor and Employment and the chairperson of the Civil Service Commission shall issue the needed rules and regulations for the proper implementation of the proposed statute.

Violations of the proposed Act shall be penalized by a fine not exceeding P25,000 or imprisonment of not less than 30 days nor more than six months, at the discretion of the court.

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