Lawmakers on Saturday batted for salary adjustments not only for public school teachers but also other government workers.
“If the police and military are now enjoying salary adjustments and the [Department of Budget and Management] found a way of providing necessary means to effect these presidential initiatives, why leave teachers behind?,” Buhay party-list Rep. Lito Atienza, deputy minority leader, said.
Like administration ally and Easterm Samar Rep. Ben Evardone, Atienza said public school teachers deserve a higher take-home pay.
“They too are essential in our desire for an efficient government to secure lives of our people. We must remember quality education for our youth is very important in nation building. Teachers have long been deprived of realistic salaries and they deserve higher take-home pay,” Atienza said.
He said President Duterte’s initiatives to raise the salaries of public school teachers must be supported and that the Budget department must find a way to accommodate this in their budgetary planning.
But Isabela Rep. Rodolfo Albano III said the pay increase should apply not only to teachers but all government workers to help them cope with the rising cost of living.
“Anything that will help the plight of government personnel is much welcomed,” Albano, majority leader for the House of Representatives’ Commission on Appointments, said.
Magdalo party-list Rep. Gary Alejano shared Albano’s view.
“I favor increasing salaries of public school teachers. But as much as possible, I think salary increases should apply to all government workers because we end up discriminating specific groups of government workers who are themselves as important as others,” Alejano, a former Marine officer, said.
Alejano said government workers such those in the health sector, the judiciary, prosecutors, among others also deserve to get salary adjustments.
“Thus the practice of announcing salary increases specific only to a profession can be divisive,” Alejano said.