National Conciliation and Mediation Board
Regional Branch No. 5
29 December 2017
Legazpi City – At first, it looked like the preventive mediation cases filed by the two unions of the Camarines Norte Electric Cooperative (CANORECO) seemed daunting. It appears that despite the negotiation of the parties for the renewal of their Collective Bargaining Agreements (CBAs), they did not agree on any single proposal by either party.
Appearing before the branch office, representatives of the two unions, namely CANORECO Rank-and-File Labor Union (CARFLU) and CANORECO Labor Union of Supervisory Employees (CLAUSE), filed a preventive mediation (PM) case on September 13, 2017 on grounds of Bargaining Deadlock on all provisions of their respective CBAs.
“During the initial conference, I was at a quandary where to start with the conciliation considering that there was deadlock in all the provisions of the CBA. Then, in a sudden flash of thought, as if a higher being helped me to arrive at an understanding of the situation, I let the parties combine similar or related provisions and tabled the succeeding meetings for each of the combined topics,” narrated Regional Branch Director Reynaldo Foncardas who handled the case.
“The subsequent conciliation meetings proved expeditious, tiring and time consuming on the part of the parties because they were held at the branch office while they travel from Daet, Camarines Norte to Legazpi City, which is a little over four hours of land travel. And cognizant of these setbacks, I deemed it wise to hold the meetings in the CANORECO Conference Room,” continued Director Foncardas.
“Ditto, it was also tiring and energy-draining on me and my staff. But in the name of public service, we diligently and patiently travelled to and from the conference venue with the end view of settling the dispute.”
“One by one, the CBA provisions were discussed and several were agreed upon. Up to some point where the parties stood pat in their positions, it was finally agreed to resort back to plant-level negotiation to further discuss among them the issues remaining unresolved. In view of these, the PM cases are deemed settled,” Director Foncardas confirmed.
Supervising Labor and Employment Officer Josephine Amaranto said, “The unique way that our director handled the case, led to finally resolving the PM case that I thought will take a long time to settle. The different technique that Director Foncardas employed in facilitating the conciliation meetings and the agreement to negotiate further at the plant-level led to the settlement. Some issues have to be further discussed and clarified among the parties, including revisiting of in-house guidelines, while some have to be referred to other government agencies for validation.”
“The total benefits derived from these were P3,074,500 for CARFLU’s 143 employees and P817,000 for CLAUSE 38 members,” SupLEO Amaranto informed.
EFLEDA A. HOURANI
APPROVED FOR RELEASE:
REYNALDO S. FONCARDAS
Regional Branch Director