Deployment of OFWs to Israel temporarily suspended — Bello

Marje Pelayo   •   May 17, 2021   •   284

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) has announced that the deployment of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) to Israel is temporarily suspended due to the ongoing violence between Israeli forces and the Hamas militant group.

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said the safety of Filipinos is the government’s utmost concern at this time.

Most of the OFWs working in the Jewish country are caregivers and hotel workers.

Given the situation, Bello urges the Filipinos bound for Israel to wait until the tension subsides.

“Medyo maghintay-hintay lang po tayo dahil sa hindi magandang kondisyon sa Israel na patutunguhan natin ay meron muna tayong precautionary suspension ng deployment doon,” he said.

The official said quick response teams are on standby to rescue Filipinos who will be caught in the violence.

So far, there are no Filipinos injured or killed in the conflict, Bello confirmed.

However, Bello noted that while the Philippine government is ready should there be calls for repatriation, some OFWs opt to stay despite the dangers.

“Kasi yung mga iba nilipat na sa Egypt. Iyong safer place nilipat sila. libo-libo na yan nasa shelter lahat yan. We are ready to repatriate them merong rapid response team,” he added.

Alert Level 1 is still raised in Israel while Level 2 is raised in the Gaza Strip.

Mandatory repatriation will be triggered when the alert levels are elevated to 3 and 4.MNP (with reports from Rey Pelayo)

DOLE, may alok na insentibo para sa mga bakunadong essential workers vs COVID-19

Robie de Guzman   •   June 18, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Mamamahagi ng bisikleta at cellphone na may load ang Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) bilang insentibo sa mga essential worker na makakakumpleto ng kanilang bakuna kontra COVID-19.

Ayon kay DOLE Bureau of Workers Special Concern (BWSC) director Atty. Ma. Karina Perida-Trarvilla, bahagi ito ng mga hakbang ng kagawaran para maenganyo ang mga manggagawang kasama sa A4 group na magpabakuna laban sa coronavirus disease.

“It’s actually pursuant to the instruction of the (DOLE) Secretary (Silvestre Bello III) that we come up [with] this incentive for our A4, economic frontliners to entice them to submit themselves to vaccination at nadeploy na nga tayo ng vaccination program for A4 noong June 7. Gusto natin maraming maengganyo na mabakunahan,” ani Perida-Trayvilla.

Aniya, uumpisahan ng DOLE sa Hulyo 1 ang pamamahagi ng 2,000 bisikleta at cellphone na may load sa A4 workers na fully vaccinated na kontra COVID-19.

Target ng programa ang mga nasa informal sector na namamasukan sa mga pribadong kumpanya, pati na ang household helpers at self-employed.

Ngunit paglilinaw ng kagawaran, sa halip na sa manggagawang nagpabakuna, ibibigay ang insentibo sa sinomang miyembro ng kanyang pamilya o kamag-anak.

“Kase nga po yung mga A4 workers natin may trabaho naman diba yung bibigyan po natin nitong bike yung kanilang next of kin or yung kanyang relative… Gusto kase nating gamitin nila ang bisikleta pawang pang livelihood,” ani Perida-Trayvilla.

Tig-isang libong bisikleta na may kasamang insulation bags, protective helmet, reflective vest, cellphone na may load wallet ang ilalaan sa mga benepisyaryo sa National Capital Region at sa mga probinsya.

“Hindi lang po iyan, yung makakatanggap ng bisikleta ii-enroll rin po natin siya sa group personal accident insurance or GPAI kase nga magla-livelihood siya mai-expose din siya sa risk kailangan mai-insure natin sila,” ani Perida-Trayvilla.

Para sa mga interesadong makakuha ng nasabing incentives, makipag-ugnayan lamang sa BWSC sa numerong 84043336 o di kaya ay mag-email sa mail@bwsc.dole.gov.ph.

Magpresenta lamang ng alin mang government o company id at vaccination card na patunay na fully vaccinated ang isang manggagawa.

Sa susunod na linggo, inaasahang matatapos na ng BWSC ang mechanics para sa nasabing livelihood program. – RRD (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Janice Ingente)

DOLE eyes expanding HCW deployment cap to 10k

Marje Pelayo   •   June 16, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) eyes increasing the current deployment cap on healthcare workers (HCW) to 5,000 more and make it 10,000 per year.

“Naniniwala ako right now na we have enough number of nurses kaya I’m willing to recommend na itaas ang deployment cap from 5,000 to another 5,000,” said Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III in response to the request of HCW who wish to seek employment abroad.

Recently, the government has stopped the deployment of new medical workers abroad after the number reached the 5,000-limit.

Bello assured that should his recommendation be approved, the country would not come short of healthcare workers.

He stressed, however, that the decision still remains with the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF).

The Filipino Nurses United is pleased with the proposal as this would provide more opportunities for them to seek greener pastures abroad.

However, they still want the removal of the deployment cap and let all Filipino healthcare workers explore employment opportunities in other countries.

“Sa tingin po namin merong sapat in terms of number. Ang problema po ay yung paghikayat ng gobyerno na magtrabaho sila as nurses sa ating mga healthcare facilities,” said Jocelyn Andamo, Secretary-General of the Filipino Nurses United.

The group said there are still around 200,000 nurses in the country who work outside their profession and earn below what they deserve being professional nurses.

Since the deployment cap was imposed, around 4,000 nurses were not able to process their documents for employment abroad. -MNP (with reports from Rey Pelayo)

DOTr, DOLE to provide jobs to repatriated OFWs affected by COVID-19 pandemic

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 8, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—The Department of Transportation (DOTr), along with other government agencies, has signed a memorandum that would provide job opportunities for repatriated overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) affected by the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

During the 2021 Migrant Workers’ Day celebration on Monday (June 7), DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade and Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA) with the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) to provide OFWs displaced by the pandemic with employment opportunities in the DOTr.

“Our repatriated OFWs who are out of work will be able to work under the DOTr at narito sila sa sarili nilang bansa. They no longer need to go out of the country because work is here at home. Second, we will not be looking elsewhere in getting the needed workforce to finish various infrastructure projects,” he said.

Under the said agreement, the DOTr will provide OWWA with a list of vacant positions and skills required where an OFW can apply for work. These include projects under the Build Build Build Program.

Tugade reported that 2,000 jobs will be made available under the PNR Clark Phase 1 Project.

He also said that the department will not only prioritize hiring OFWs, but also displaced public utility drivers and conductors once the project becomes operational. AAC

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