Tripartism is declared as a State policy in labor-management relations. Thus, workers and employers shall, as far as practicable, be represented in decision, consultative and policy-making bodies of the Department. This approach of ensuring that stakeholders’ concerns and inputs are considered promotes greater integration of objectives, means and circulation and processing of information.

Tripartism and social dialogue are exercised through the Tripartite Industrial Peace Council (TIPC), whether national or local, including industry tripartite councils (ITCs). The TIPC was created in 1990, through Executive Order No. 403, as the main consultative mechanism and advisory body of the social partners—workers, employers and government—on labor and employment lodged with the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE). The TIPC has evolved and expanded to include all interested labor groups for an inclusive social dialogue. Organized at the national, regional, provincial, city and municipal, and industry levels (ITCs), the creation of these tripartite councils was institutionalized through the enactment of Republic Act No. 10395 or the Tripartism Law, which was signed on 14 March 2013.

For tripartism to be optimal, the TIPC functions as an institution for:

  1. monitoring the full implementation and compliance by concerned sectors with provisions of all tripartite instruments, including international conventions, codes of conduct, and social accords;
  2. participating in national, regional or industry-specific tripartite conferences which the President or the Secretary of Labor and Employment may call from time to time;
  3. reviewing existing labor, economic and social policies and to evaluate local and international developments affecting them;
  4. formulating for submission to the President or Congress, tripartite views, recommendations and proposals on labor, economic and social concerns including the presentation of tripartite positions on relevant bills pending in Congress;
  5. advising the Secretary of Labor and Employment in the formulation or implementation of policies and legislation affecting labor and employment;
  6. serving as a communication channel and a mechanism for undertaking join programs among government, workers, employers and their organizations toward enhancing labor-management relations; and
  7. adopting its own program of activities and rules, consistent with development objectives.

Meanwhile, industry tripartite councils (ITCs) draft and review policies rules and regulations on labor and employment, promotion of productivity improvement programs, decent work principles and serve as sounding board on industry issues particularly in Key Employment Generators (KEGs).