By Michael Aaron Gomez
The Ateneo de Davao University central administration signed four new Collective Bargaining Agreements (CBA) with the presidents of the University’s four different labor unions in the afternoon of 4 October 2019 at the Martin Hall.
The union presidents and representatives of the central administration signed the new agreements after a series of messages delivered by the union presidents. The new CBAs, according to Human Resource Management and Development Office (HRMDO) Director Atty. Niceforo V. Solis, Jr., ensures industrial peace for the next five years. The CBAs are effective 2019-2024.
Several rounds of negotiations on the provisions and clauses of the new CBA between the administration panel and union representatives resulted in the new agreements.
Signing the four new agreements were University President Fr. Joel E. Tabora, S. J.; Atty. Solis; Vice President for Finance and University Treasurer Mr. Jimmy Delgado; and the respective union presidents: Mr. German S. Perias, President of the Ateneo de Davao Employees Union – FFW; Ms. Arlene D. Golloso, President of the Ateneo de Davao Preschool and Grade School Academic Teaching and Academic Non-teaching Employees Union – FFW; Mr. Daniel B. Villanueva, President of the Unyon ng mga Guro sa Ateneo – High School (UGAT – HS); and Ms. Judith D. Dalagan, President of the College Faculty Union. Also attending the ceremony was Atty. Connie Beb A. Torralba, Mediator – Arbiter of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Region XI.
In their messages, the union presidents expressed their gratitude to the administration panel for the swift and dynamic negotiations that produced the new CBAs.
“I can say that this time is unique. This is the first time that the four unions came together,” Mr. Perias said in his message. “The results came together quickly, and it was very substantial. The proposals that were approved for the NTP [Non-teaching personnel] were very generous and were very much improved. We are thankful to the management.” He also added, “Ever since Fr. Joel became University president, the union has not lodged a complaint against the management.”
For her part, Ms. Golloso, president of the preschool and grade school union, said, “In unions there is strength. I believe that in community, there is greater strength, and that is one thing I have learned in this institution.” She added, “May this signing of this [CBA] allow us to grow more in our relationship, in our strength as a community, allow us to grow in our collaboration, and may this strength be continuously used for God’s greater glory and service.”
“This [new CBA] is very distinct from the previous one,” Mr. Villanueva, of UGAT – HS, said of the CBA his union signed. “[This is] because of the many graces bestowed upon us all during the course of our conversations.” He added, “Truly I can say with joy, we are what we stand for.”
To end the round of messages from the union presidents, Ms. Dalagan, of the College Faculty Union, addressed the audience present. “Thank you, Fr. Joel, for upholding the dignity of work,” she said. “With this CBA, we hope and pray that we sustain our collaborative efforts in serving Ateneo with magis.”
“I am very happy and very grateful that we have come to an agreement, or that we have come to four separate agreements with one another,” Fr. Tabora said, in his closing address to the unions. “We have been able to work through this period of renewal of our CBAs with relative smoothness… I am truly very glad and grateful that in all of the CBA documents, all the unions commit themselves to promote the vision and mission of the school. All of the unions, all of the employees, commit themselves to promote what Ateneo de Davao stands for.”
Fr. Tabora also added, “The mission and vision of this Ateneo de Davao University is absolutely meaningless without the employees of Ateneo de Davao University and without the community that we strive to form here at Ateneo de Davao.”
The union presidents also thanked Fr. Tabora for his extensive and consistent support for the unions, promising to repay this support in the exercise of their duties as employees of the University.
The four unions represent all employees—faculty, staff, and non-teaching personnel—working in the University’s four units. In signing the CBA, the University recognizes the necessity of a harmonious and productive relationship between the administration and the workers in fulfilling its mission and realizing its vision for its students, and Mindanao.
Photo credits: Institutional Communications and Promotions (ICOMMP) Office, Ateneo de Davao University