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House OKs bill lowering optional retirement age for gov’t workers

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By Ellson Quismorio

Voting unanimously, the House of Representatives passed on third and final reading the proposed bill lowering to 56 the optional retirement age for government employees during session Monday.

The Joint Session of the Senate and the House of Representatives on the extension of Martial Law in Mindanao commences in the Plenary of the Batasang Pambansa on December 13, 2017. (ALVIN KASIBAN / MANILA BULLETIN)

(MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO)

Given the Lower Chamber’s final nod was House Bill (HB) No. 5509, via nominal voting. The vote line among the congressmen was 192-0-0 (yes-no-abstain).

House Minority Bloc member, ACT Teachers Party-list Representative France Castro is the main author of the measure, which seeks to pull down the optional retirement age for government employees from the current 60 years old.

The same bill was approved on second reading through viva voce vote or voice vote last week.

In justifying her measure, Castro said government employees, particularly public school teachers, shouldn’t be required to perform “arduous functions” in their profession once they reach the age of 56.

“At such stage of their lives, public school teachers should at least be given the choice if they wish to rest from the profession and enjoy better and healthy years ahead,” she said.

The House of Representatives will begin its month-long holiday recess after Wednesday’s session.

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