Elders deserve chance for work (1)

Photo: AL PADILLA | Daily Tribune

August 14, 2022

People who reach the age of 60 usually have the option to retire from their work and spend their quality time enjoying their remaining years and also do the things that they were not able to do during their youth.

While some people still work despite their old age mainly due to their personal needs, opportunities for them are few to come by.

According to the Labor Force Survey released by the Philippine Statistics Authority last week, the labor participation rate for ages 65 and above increased to 38.2 percent, compared to 34.9 percent in May this year.

It shows that they were forced to find work because of their need to have a bigger income to meet the increasing prices of basic commodities.

Modesto Loyola, 70, a resident of Loreto, Sampaloc, Manila, who previously worked in a fast-food restaurant inside SM San Lazaro from January to March 2020 told Daily Tribune on Friday that the program helped him to cover their expenses since his live-in partner were only able to receive a monthly pension of P3,700.

He said that working in a fast-food chain helped them to cover their daily expenses such as their utility bills and food.

“Working in a fast food was a big help for our expenses where we are not getting short since my wife only received a small amount from her pension,” Loyola said.

Health a priority

He shared that he always wakes up at four in the morning to jog on the premises near the Malacañang compound before he goes to his work.

During his employment, he was able to report for twenty hours weekly with an afternoon shift from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m where he received a weekly salary of about P1,300. Prior to his first day of work, they were trained by the personnel of the fast-food restaurant on the basics, particularly its menu.

In his youthful years age 18 to 30, he worked as a laborer in the 1970’s where he only received then a daily wage of P4.00. He also shared that he was one of the laborers who built the Philippine International Convention Center.

After that, he worked in a printing press for two and a half years where he received P28 per day when he was 35.

After his stint in a printing press, he only accepts some part-time jobs of being a laborer and as he aged, the offers became rare.

When asked about his thoughts on the proposed bill seeking to remove the mandatory retirement age, he said that it will benefit senior citizens like him who have the good physique to continue doing work.

“You can still work even at 65 years old as long as your body and mind are still able,” he said.

National Economic Development Authority Secretary Arsenio Balisacan has urged the private sector to provide them opportunities to adopt potential employment in digital space and agriculture. To be continued


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