Bill seeks more ben­e­fits for agri dev’t work­ers

Business World - - THE ECONOMY - Jan­ina C. Lim

THE House’s deputy speaker has filed a bill call­ing for ad­di­tional ben­e­fits and com­pen­sa­tion for agri­cul­tural devel­op­ment work­ers.

Deputy Speaker Sharon S. Garin’s House Bill 6329 or the Magna Carta of Agri­cul­tural Devel­op­ment Work­ers seeks to in­crease the pro­fes­sion’s ben­e­fits in terms of com­pen­sa­tion and work­ing hours, and out­lines other in­cen­tives.

Work­ers un­der this cat­e­gory in­clude agri­cul­tural tech­ni­cians, agri­cul­tur­ists, aqua­cul­tur­ists, nu­tri­tion­ists, agri­cul­tural engi­neers, agri­cul­tural tech­nol­o­gists, and fish­eries of­fi­cers in the city, mu­nic­i­pal, and pro­vin­cial lev­els.

“With the great con­tri­bu­tion of agri­cul­ture to our na­tion’s devel­op­ment, it is proper that the govern­ment give prime im­por­tance to projects and pro­grams that sup­port this sec­tor,” Ms. Garin said in a state­ment.

The agri­cul­ture sec­tor em­ploys more than a third of the coun­try’s work force but con­trib­utes about a fifth to the econ­omy.

The ba­sis for ben­e­fits will in­clude civil ser­vice el­i­gi­bil­i­ties, pro­fes­sional li­cense and re­quired ed­u­ca­tion.

The state­ment noted that lo­cal govern­ment units opt to leave po­si­tions for lo­cal agri­cul­tural devel­op­ment work­ers va­cant in or­der to cut costs.

Such prac­tices has been blamed for the in­ef­fec­tive and slow de­liv­ery of agri­cul­tural sup­port to farm­ers in var­i­ous prov­inces and re­gions, in turn weigh­ing down on pro­duc­tion.

“A bet­ter and more ef­fi­cient de­liv­ery of govern­ment as­sis­tance would lead to a more vi­brant agri­cul­tural sec­tor,” Ms. Garin added. —

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