[Blueboard] CBA Deadlock Statement of AEWU to the Ateneo Community

Nomeriano Jr. S. Amata namata at ateneo.edu
Tue Jan 9 13:02:51 +08 2018


PEACE.  Here is the Union’s response to Ateneo’s 5 January 2018 statement:

*1.  Amount Available for Wages and Benefits.*  Ateneo claims that only 70%
of the tuition fee increases are available for increases in salaries and
benefits of ALL of its employees.  To put it kindly, this is ERRONEOUS AND

R.A. No. 6728 and D.O. 15, S 1992, mandate that the 70% of tuition fee
increases (TFI) should *“go to the payment of salaries, wages, allowances
and other benefits of teaching and non-teaching personnel except
administrators who are principal stockholders of the school, and may be
used to cover increases as provided for in the collective bargaining
agreements existing or in force at the time when this Act is approved and
made effective.”*  However, they do not decree that the increases should
only be sourced from TFI.  Hence, the 70% of the tuition fee increases is
only the MINIMUM amount that Ateneo may give as increases in salaries and
benefits of its employees.

Ateneo has *not denied* that the NET INCOME of its General Fund has
exceeded *P1 Billion* for the past three (3) years: [a] *2015 -
P350M*; [b] *2016
- P382M*; and [c] *2017 - P415M*.  However, it says that these amounts have
been “Restricted for Property and Equipment” and that the portion of the
General Fund that is “not restricted” and available for distribution as
salary increases and improved benefits is *minus P26 Million*.  Does being
“restricted for property and equipment” mean that the funds have already
been spent?  Or does it mean that these funds have merely been “allotted
for property and equipment”? *Ateneo does not say*.  Moreover, why has
Ateneo restricted so much money for property and equipment that it can only
afford to give its organized employees gen. increase of a measly
*P275.00/mo.* [Ateneo’s improved offer] which is merely one-half (½) of the
increase in minimum wage granted in October 2017?

*2.  Computation of the Union Members’ share in the 70% of the TFI.*
According to Ateneo, it has 3,109 employees composed of: [a] 246
non-academic staff who are union members; [b] 468 non-union non-academic
staff; and [c] 2,395 academic staff.  The Union members comprise *7.91%* of
the total employee complement.  Despite this, Ateneo is offering the Union
a  paltry *5.91%* of the portion of the TFI allotted for increases in wages
and benefits as an “improved” offer.  Consequently, while Ateneo has
maintained the salary increase it has given to non-union employees [gen.
increase of *2.5% or P700/mo.* and merit increase of *6% (max) or
P1,680.00/mo.* on an average salary of P28,000.00] in the previous years,
it has drastically reduced its offer to the Union [gen. increase of
*P275.00/mo.* and merit increase (max) of *P925.00/mo.*; down from
*3.5%/mo.* and *3%/mo.*, respectively, with a *minimum guaranteed increase*
of *P1,300.00/mo.*]

Ateneo says its offer is based on a pro-rated distribution of existing
salaries.  The Union has repeatedly asked Ateneo for the data to verify
this (*e.g.,* the number of non-union staff and other groups of non-union
employees and their respective average salaries.  Ateneo has refused to
give the information but it admitted during the negotiations that it
included endowments and grants in the salaries of faculty and non-union
employees in computing their share in the 70% of the TFI, although these
should have been excluded.  Worse, Ateneo also refuses to consider a
different distribution scheme even though D.O. 15, S 1992, provides that *“the
distribution scheme shall be based on an agreement between the school
administration and the DOLE-certified and recognized union of teaching and
non-teaching personnel. In the absence of an agreement or an employee
union, it should be pro-rated based on existing salaries.”*

*3.  The Union’s Demands.*  Ateneo says the Union’s demands for the two
years of the CBA amount to 47% of what is earmarked for the whole
University.  Who earmarked the amount?  Ateneo.  From where is the amount
earmarked sourced?  70% of the TFI.

However, Ateneo conveniently omits to mention that the amount it can
earmark for increases in employees’ benefits and wages need not only come
from the 70% of the TFI.  It can also be taken from income generated by its
operations which exceeded more than *P1 Billion* from 2015 to 2017.  Sadly,
instead of allotting a portion of these enormous earnings to its employees,
Ateneo chose to “restrict” all of them for “property and equipment.”  Does
Ateneo value “property and equipment” more than its employees?
Furthermore, the Union has made it clear that its demands are negotiable,
so long as Ateneo is willing to agree to a just and equitable CBA.  Right
now, Ateneo is treating unionized employees as second class.

4.  *Effectivity of the CBA.* The agreed negotiation ground rules state
that *“(t)he Union’s proposals that have been accepted by the University
Administration will be identified, documented, included in the minutes and
then signed as having been settled already.”*  The Union proposed that *“(a)ll
the provisions of this Agreement shall be in force and effect from June 1,
2017 to May 31, 2019.”*  Ateneo’s counterproposal is *“(a)ll the provisions
of this Agreement shall be in force and effect from June 1, 2017 up to May
31, 2019.”*  *Since the Union’s proposal and Ateneo’s counterproposal on
the CBA’s period of effectivity are the same, they have agreed on it
already.*  Yet, Ateneo refuses to recognize the agreement, claiming that it
had a different proposal regarding the period of effectivity of th CBA in
the ground rules it proposed to the Union.

Ateneo has taught its students to be generous - *persons for others*.  It
has also taught its students to be responsible and trustworthy - *persons
of their word*.  Time for Ateneo to live up to its teachings and practice
what it preaches.  Enter into a JUST AND EQUITABLE CBA with the Union.

                                                         *ATENEO EMPLOYEES



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