Supreme Court rules in favor of striking workers of local university in Davao
By Jessie L. Casalda
DAVAO CITY - The Supreme Court (SC) has sustained the order of the Court of Appeals affirming a ruling from the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) directing the University of Immaculate Concepcion (UIC) to distribute some P11-million school’s proceeds to labor union members who staged a strike during the 90’s.
In a 22-page decision, the High Court also ordered the University of Immaculate Concepcion (UIC) to pay P30,000 each to 11 “confidential employees” who were terminated from their jobs without complying to the prescribed procedural process.
Ofelia Diapuez, Melanie dela Rosa, Angelina Abadilla, Lelian Concon, Mary Ann de Ramos, Zenaida Canoy, Alma Villacarlos, Paulina Palma Gil, Jose Boston, Gemma Galope, and Leah Cruza were dismissed by the UIC management after they refused to give up their membership with the UIC Teaching and Non-Teaching Employees Union – Federation of Free Workers (FFW).
The SC’s Third Division composed by Associate Justices Francis Jardeleza, Presbitero Velasco Jr., Martin Villarama, Diosdado Peralta, and Jose Portugal Perez reversed the findings of the Department of Labor and the Court of Appeals that the employees have the right to join the labor union since they did not hold managerial functions.
The case stemmed from the Notice of Strike (NOC) filed by the UIC union workers on June 20, 1994, on the grounds of bargaining deadlock and unfair labor practice allegedly committed by the school’s management.
But the impending strike was averted since the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) had immediately assumed jurisdiction over the labor dispute to settle it amicably.