As part of our internship in SENTRO, we must do fieldwork. There are two parts in our data gathering. First we must make a questionnaire for the precarious workers in the broadcasting industry (Because of the very limited time of our internship, SENTRO decided that we focus on this sector). Questions concerning their contracts, benefits, wages, training, daily expenditures, gender sensitivity, etc. are the contents of the questionnaire. The study aims to find out whether or not there are differences in these aspects of different workers in the different broadcasting companies. We also changed the title of our study to THE EMPLOYMENT TRENDS IN THE BRODCASTING INDUSTRY to ensure that they do not give biased answers.
The next part is the interview. The difficult part about workers in this industry is that they do not have a permanent schedule. Most of them work on-call duties. That’s why every Monday and Saturday we must have a flexible time because whenever they are free, that’s the only time when we can talk to them. As early as 7am before they start their work or as late as 8pm after their duty or during their coffee or cigarette breaks, that’s the only time when we could really talk to them. It’ really hard because there is no permanent place where we can interview them, it may be in the union office or in their studio or even at the company’s gate. We grab every opportunity whenever we think they are free.
I would like to share a story we heard from a certain broadcasting company wherein years ago, a group of precarious workers protested because they were about to be promoted as regular workers. Why don’t they want this to happen? According to them, being a contractual worker pays more than being a regular worker. As a regular worker, they have a fixed salary but if they are a contractual worker, the hours of overtime are paid by the company. If they are regulars, overtime won’t be compensated. This is interesting because I have never thought of contractual working that way.
Our work in SENTRO is finished and I hope that this would be of great help to SENTRO. They gave us this great opportunity to look at employment in a different way. And I know that in the future, this would give us different perspective on how we look at ourselves and thousand other people who are part of the labor force.
-Therese Lee R. de Vera 2012-44853