January 29, 2023

Hundreds of caddies in three major clubs in Baguio heaved a sigh of relief when parbusters pooled their resources to raise funds for them, as they were left without other source of livelihood due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Caddies at Camp John Hay, Baguio Country Club, and Pinewoods Golf & Country Club started to receive initial relief assistance from various individual players and groups who responded to their call for help.
Among the groups taking the lead in organizing relief drive for the caddies are the Baguio Ladies Open Golf Association, Baguio Blue Bloods, Pines Kumpadres Golf Club, Inc., and Adivay Golf, among other groups and individuals.
BLOGA has distributed 90 sacks of rice at 25 kilos each and 90 kilos of chicken meat equally given to BCC caddies on March 21.
The group of Edwin Ganga also distribute food items to the all-female caddies of Pinewoods, most of them are single mothers.
Caddies at Camp John Hay also received initial assistance pooled from various donors, mostly members of CJH Golf Club.
As the Covid-19 pandemic continues to displace workers, caddies are hopeful of the immediate approval into law of the bill seeking to provide health, retirement, and other benefits to independent caddies in all golf clubs in the country.
In February, the House Committee on Labor and Employment approved House Bill 1343 authored by Baguio Rep. Mark Go, who said that most independent caddies do not have benefits accorded to regular employees.
Caddies in major golf clubs in Baguio and Benguet are not regular employees, who are entitled to Social Security System, PhilHealth, Pag-Ibig, as well as retirement benefits.
Go said that caddies are also vulnerable to some health hazards and other job-related risks, which warrant their entitlement to benefits received by regular employees.
When passed into law, golf club managements will be required to accredit golf caddies and other related service workers who render services to players of the club.
More than 90 golf courses operate in the country today, of which mostly are located in Luzon. – Harley F. Palangchao