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Troubled call center agents call for reforms

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CEBU City — The Inter-Call Center Association of Workers – Partido ng Manggagawa (ICCAW-PM) has demanded change and reform in the business process outsourcing (BPO) industry.

ICCAW-PM, which is composed of call center agents of Direct Access in Cebu, was organized last year after their foreign employers abruptly shut down the company and left them without jobs.

The workers’ union is registered with the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).

It also expressed support for the struggle of call agents of Cordia Philippines, which was also closed last year by its American owner allegedly without paying their salaries and benefits.

“We found ourselves in this same situation before and it is the very reason why ICCAW-PM was established,” the group said in a statement. “It is disheartening to know that call center companies can abruptly shut down and leave their employees with no pay and without jobs.”

“But what enrages us is when a call center company closes down, runs away from its obligations but then easily opens up a new company of the same nature and with the same clients,” the group further said.

ICCAW-PM also asked candidates running in the May 13, 2013 elections to make workers’ demands a part of their platform.

“If our so-called democracy is not just all form but has substance, then the demands of the majority of the people must be met by those seeking the mandate of the voters,” the group said.

“We have yet to see many of them respond to the urgent demands of the workers and the poor aside from motherhood statements,” read the ICCAW-PM press statement. (PNA)