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PHILIPPINE AIRLINES, INC.

, petitioner,
vs.
ALBERTO SANTOS, JR., HOUDIEL MAGADIA, GILBERT ANTONIO, REGINO DURAN,
PHILIPPINE AIRLINES EMPLOYEES ASSOCIATION, and THE NATIONAL LABOR
RELATIONS COMMISSION, respondents.
G.R. No. 77875 February 4, 1993
Facts: This was an instant petition for certiorari to set aside the decision of NLRC
setting aside the suspension of the complaints and directing Philippine Airline to pay
complainants their salaries.
Individual respondents were port stewards of catering sub-department on the
passenger services department of petitioner. Their salaries were deducted due to
the mishandling of companys properties which the respondents resented. On
August 27, 1984, represented by the union, individual respondents made a formal
notice regarding the deductions thru Mr. Abad, Manager for care taking who was on
vacation leave but no action was taken. They then filed a formal grievance pursuant
to the collective bargaining agreement.
On his return, Mr. Abad on December 7, 1984, he informed the grievants and
scheduled meeting. Thereafter, the individual respondents refused to do ramp
inventory thinking that since there was no action taken by Mr. Abad five days after
they filed the petition, it shall be resolved in their favor. But Mr. Abad denied the
petition and suspended individual respondents. He also pointed out that it was only
proper that employees were charged for the mishandling of companys property.
Private respondents filed a complaint for illegal suspension to the labor arbiter. The
decision was ruled in favor of the petitioner and the complaint was set aside. The
labor arbiters decision was appealed to the respondent commission who rendered
decision setting aside the labor arbiters order of dismissal. Petitioners motion for
reconsideration was denied.
Issue: Whether public respondent NLRC acted with grave abuse of discretion
amounting to lack of jurisdiction on resolving in favor of individual respondents who
believed that inaction on the petition they filed for grievance would be resolved in
their favor in accordance to their collective bargaining agreement ?
Held: The petition hinges on the interpretation of Sec. 2, Art. IV of the PAL-PALEA
Collective Bargaining Agreement about the processing of grievances. Petitioner
submits that since the grievance machinery was made for both labor and
management, employees are duty-bound to thresh out first all the remedies before
the management and give them opportunity to act on it. But due to the absence of
Mr. Abad the grievance was not acted upon.

The court held that the employees should not bear the dire effects of Mr. Abads
absence. The management should had someone else to look after the grievance
during his absence. Under the policy of social justice, the law bends over backward
to accommodate the interests of the working class on the humane justification that
those with less privileges in life should have more privileges in law.
Ruling: Petition was denied and the assailed decision of NLRC was affirmed.