Ako Bicol Partylist Representatives Rodel Batocabe, Alfredo Garbin Jr., and Christopher Co has recently filed House Bill (HB) 4291 or the proposed Work-at-Home Act of 2016. Here are three things to know about the proposed bill on the Work-At-Home Program:

  1. Mandating all government and non-government offices to adopt work-at-home programs.

According to HB 4292’s Explanatory Note, the bill seeks to mandate government and non-government offices, and establishments to adopt policies that will provide work-at-home programs for employees. Once enacted, the measure will, among others, help provide convenience to the employees, decongest Metro Manila, and save on utility costs of employer companies. It also said that through the said measure, employees, especially single parents, will benefit greatly from a work-at-home, wherein they can do their work at home, in their own pace, at least once a week.

The measure wanted to take advantage of current technological advancements, especially in the field of Information and Communication Technology (ICT). These advancements may now allow jobs or tasks to be done at home, through internet and telephone connectivity, which in the past could only be done in the office.

  1. HB 4292 wants to provide respite from traffic woes.

The house bill seeks to provide at least a one-day respite from the stressful commute of employees. The bill’s sponsors noted that traffic congestion and overcrowding in most central business centers in Metro Manila and other urban centers continue to take its toll on employees.

With the worsening traffic problems, employees waste increasingly more time in their commute to and from the office. The legislators believe that increased travel time means less time for activities not related to work.

  1. The proposed measure will lessen traffic congestion and provide savings for employers.

The Ako Bicol Partylist Representatives noted that there are an estimated 4.7 million employed workers in Metro Manila. Most of these workers commute to and from the office. They said that if we allow at least 10 percent of these workers to work at home at least once a week, it would help lessen traffic congestion by reducing the number of commuting and driving public on certain days of the week, especially those who work in Metro Manila but live in the suburbs.

On the other hand, the measure is seen to benefit employers because with a work-at-home program, it will save the company on utility costs during days when many employees are working at home. When employees work from home, they would be using their own electricity and water utility. Companies can also utilize the program to help streamline and maximize office spaces and premises.

What do you think of House Bill 4291 or the proposed Work-at-Home Act of 2016? Share to us your comments below.