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Walls of biases in the workplace have to go down: DOLE says

Cebu City, Philippines. “In this age whereby the so-called soft or life skills are being given premium more than the technical skills, it is also highly essential that biases and other exclusionary practices that are still lurking in the corners of every workplace are eliminated.”

This was the message of DOLE-7 Regional Director Salome O. Siaton before the hundreds of people managers attending the 19th Regional Conference ad 2nd Visayas Summit of the People Management Association of the Philippines (PMAP-Cebu, Inc.) held last month at Galleria Summit Circle, Cebu City.

Director Siaton profusely welcomed the initiative made by the group insofar as integrating diversity and inclusion in the workplace, which she said is often hampered by some deeply-rooted biases and traditional beliefs and other practices that are still creeping within the confines of many offices of today.

The 2-day activity was packed with learning sessions, which all offered novel and bright ideas for people managers, empowering them in all aspects of bringing out the best of everyone at work regardless of religious beliefs, ethnicity, affiliations, cultural background, race, gender, and lifestyle.

“HR WoW (Without Walls): Purposive Inclusion,” is this year’s activity theme underscoring the need for each company to be agile and change ready if they are to stay on top of the game.

The “walls,” according to PMAP represent biases and other exclusionary practices that put minorities into that limit their potentials. It is also a protectionist mentality that unfortunately nurtures practices that are no longer relevant, unhelpful and can even stunt growth.

Said walls, said the DOLE-7 Head, have to go down, together with all other practices at work, which are tainted with suffocating stereotypes, thus, making them bland and obsolete. “Traditional beliefs that have marred the opportunity of those, who might have contributed should be eradicated. What is needed is a collaborative, supportive, and respectful environment that increases the participation and contribution of all types of employees,” she said.

Director Siaton looked forward to seeing the positive outcome of the activity and the insights that people managers would get from it, which she hoped would help them graduate from just merely doing things the way they’ve been always done in the past and eventually propel them to go past the limits and boundaries set forth by conventional and stereotyped practices in the workplace.

She reminded PMAP though that the idea of diversity and inclusion could never be divorced from the concept of equal pay for equal work or from the concept of a healthy and safe working environment. The group, she added, should also be conscious in assisting their respective companies abide by the basics – and that’s compliance to what the labor laws require.

“There is beauty in building bridges instead of walls. There is power in connecting. There is greatness in advancing for an inclusive workplace rather than going for a divided one,” added the Regional Director, who also acknowledged with sincerity and pride the contributions made by people managers in sustaining a sound working environment for the workers and in uplifting their working conditions as well.

She congratulated PMAP and the rest of its officers and members for making the activity possible. The 19th Regional Conference ad 2nd Visayas Summit of the People Management Association of the Philippines (PMAP-Cebu, Inc.) was attended by over 400 people managers coming from the different parts of the Visayas.

The PMAP is a non-profit professional organization with over 200 member-companies and individual management executives engaged or interested in human resource management and industrial relations work.



For more information on this report, you may contact Luchel SenarloTaniza, Regional Labor Communication Officer at telefax number (032) 266-2792 or you may send an email at






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