(PNA file photo)

MANILA – Quezon City Rep. Marvin Rillo is pushing for the passage of new legislation that would grant a fully paid week-long bereavement leave benefit to all employees in the event of an immediate family member’s death.

As proposed by Rillo in House Bill No. 4340, private and public sector employees would be entitled to seven days of paid bereavement leave following the death of a spouse, biological or adoptive parent or child, or a full or half-blood brother or sister.

“The death of a loved one creates considerable physical, emotional and psychological burden on employees, who deserve a break from work to grieve and attend to funeral arrangements,” Rillo said in a news release on Sunday.

“The paid bereavement leave, once enacted, will go a long way in cultivating a truly compassionate workplace for every Filipino,” he added.

Rillo said his measure “is in accordance with the right of employees to humane conditions of work, and consistent with the duty of the State to afford full protection to labor.”

Under Rillo’s bill, bereavement leave would be in addition to all paid leave benefits currently enjoyed by employees.

Employers would be prohibited from using bereavement leave to reduce existing leave rights established by laws, decrees, executive orders, or any contract, agreement or policy.

Employees who avail of bereavement leave would also be assured of the security of tenure.

The bill further provides that: “Availment of the leave shall not be considered a misconduct or any form of unsatisfactory performance, nor can it be used as a reason for demotion, suspension or termination from employment.”

Under the proposed measure, employers who fail to grant the bereavement leave benefit would face punishment by a maximum fine of PHP20,000 or up to 30 days in prison. (PNA)