Good news for moms! President Rodrigo Duterte has signed Republic Act No. 11165, also known as the Telecommuting Act. It’s a law that institutionalizes work-from-home arrangements in the private sector.
Telecommuting, also known as working-from-home, is basically a work arrangement that allows employees to work outside of the office – mainly with the use of telecommunications and other technologies such as the Internet and computers. So instead of traveling and physically staying at an office to work, the employee can work from the comforts of his/her home, coffee shops, or other venues.
What is the Telecommuting Act?
The telecommuting act recognizes this arrangement and orders the private sector in the country to do the same. The law states that an employer in the private sector can offer a telecommuting program to employees on a voluntary basis. At the same time, the arrangement should also abide by the minimum labor standards. So there should be compensable work hours, a minimum number of work hours, overtime, rest days, and leave entitlement.
Employers are also supposed to ensure that telecommuting employees are treated fairly. Similar to traditional employees who work at the employer’s workplace, telecommuting employees are also entitled to overtime and night shift differential, rest periods, regular holidays, special nonworking holidays, same equivalent workload and standards, same access to training, and career development opportunities, among others.
So what does this mean for moms?
The telecommuting act is a good thing for moms who are currently working from home or who are considering doing so, mainly for the following reasons:
The telecommuting act aims to provide work-from-home workers the same benefits as regular employees. This means that work from home moms can get to enjoy holidays with their kids, health benefits for their families, and even training and career advancement opportunities. Most of which might not be a norm for work from home opportunities.
The telecommuting act might allow working moms the opportunity to try working from home and spend more time with their kids. The law states that private companies can offer telecommuting options to their employees. This allows working moms who work in a traditional office setting to apply for the said option once offered. Letting them spend more time with their kids without necessarily giving up their careers.
The telecommuting act might provide more opportunities for moms to work while at home. Perhaps one of the best things about this law is that it standardizes the work-from-home arrangement and asks private companies to do the same. This could mean more career opportunities for moms and even dads who wish to spend more time with their family and have better work-life balance