Donning protest ribbons, at least 100 children of Skyway workers today joined their parents’ protest action against the Philippine National Construction Corporation (PNCC). Since September, Skyway workers have been protesting PNCC’s secret moves to transfer the operations of Skyway to Citra that would lead to the mass layoff of 1,000 workers.
Wearing red ribbons bearing the message, “Save our Future,” the children trooped to the PNCC to submit their petition asking the company to ensure the job security of Skyway workers even as Citra takes over the operations of the public utility.
“Whoever runs Skyway can’t operate without workers. So why do our parents have to lose their jobs,” asked Rosalyn Ado, 13 years old. Rosalyn is the daughter of Jose Apollo Ado, president of the Philippine Skyway Corporation Employees Union (PSCEU).
Joining Rosalyn are the children of rank and file workers belonging to PSCEU and the security guards belonging to the Traffic Management and Security Department Workers’ Organization (PSTMSDWO).
The PNCC intends to push through with the transfer of Skyway operations to Citra by December 31, 2007.
“We will not let PNCC and Citra run roughshod over our constitutional rights,” Jose Apollo Ado, said. “If we let them get away with this, imagine how Citra and PNCC will treat the riding public in the future,” he added.
Apart from the mass layoff aimed at completely destroying the unions in Skyway, the protesting workers believe that the secret deal between PNCC and Citra also raises the possibility of toll fee hikes.
Both PSCEU and PSTMSDWO have vowed to sustain their protest actions until they get solid guarantees for their members’ workers’ and trade union rights.
PSCEU is an affiliate of the Workers Solidarity Network (WSN), which in turn is affiliated to the Alliance of Progressive Labor (APL).