GABRIELA Party-list Rep. Arlene D. Brosas has filed a bill that seeks to create 84,000 permanent positions for workers nationwide involved in early child care and development.
House Bill No. 3266 aims to ensure effective early interventions for Filipino children up to 6 years old by providing security of tenure and other benefits to child development workers (CDWs), or teachers and personnel of daycare centers.
“Upgrading the compensation and welfare of CDWs will certainly equate to upgrading the early childhood learning and development, which is crucial now, especially as the latest rankings show that the Philippines suffers from severe learning poverty,” Ms. Brosas, also assistant minority leader, said.
The bill also seeks to protect child workers from arbitrary salaries and allowances dictated by elected officials.
Under the proposed law, titled the Magna Carta of Child Development Workers, those ranked as CDW I and II will be receiving remuneration for salary grade 6 and 8 positions, respectively, under the government’s pay level system.
“This measure seeks to end the political patronage practice which binds the fate of CDWs to winning politicians at the local level,” she said. “We have to give them job security, the opportunity to improve their teaching abilities.”
Data from the Department of Social Welfare and Development show there are about 67,733 CDWs, both in tenured and non-tenured positions, who do not receive standard wages or benefits.
“Around 9.3% or 6,306 of total child development workers are volunteers,” the bill said in its explanatory note.— Matthew Carl L. Montecillo