DOLE assures assistance to repatriated OFW acquitted of murder in KSA

Marje Pelayo   •   September 28, 2020   •   199

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) has assured assistance to Rose Dacanay Policarpio, an overseas Filipino worker (OFW) who was recently repatriated after being acquitted of murder in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said the government had worked closely on the case of Policarpio until she gained her freedom, and will continue to help her to start anew.

Policarpio was repatriated last week, two years after being acquitted on the murder of her Lebanese employer.

Labor Attache Nasser Mustafa of the Philippine Overseas Labor Office in Riyadh said Policarpio arrived in Saudi Arabia on June 3, 2013.

She was deployed by her Philippine recruitment agency, Saranay Philippines Inc. as a food server for the Saudi Ministry of Defense and Aviation but  she ended up as a household service worker to a Lebanese woman who was living alone. 

Barely two weeks after her arrival, she was falsely accused of the murder of her employer.

Policarpio denied the accusation and claimed that the crime was perpetrated by three unidentified men, who entered the house of her employer while she was out throwing garbage.

After the incident, she called her Saudi agency, who arrived at the scene with members of the Saudi police. She was detained thereafter and the case of murder was filed against her.

The Philippine Embassy in Riyadh provided her with a lawyer from the AI Kheraiji Law Office, which helped her obtain an acquittal in November 2018.

Policarpio was finally freed in December 2018. She was fetched from the police precinct by representatives of the Assistance to Nationals Section of the Embassy and was admitted at Bahay Kalinga on January 3, 2019.

After staying at the Bahay Kalinga for less than nine months, she was transferred to Lotuston Hotel, the temporary shelter maintained by the Embassy for distressed female OFWs with police cases. 

She stayed at the hotel for one year before her repatriation last week.

Pamamahagi ng libreng bisikleta sa mga nawalan ng trabaho, sisimulan sa Oct. 26 – DOLE

Robie de Guzman   •   October 23, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Sisimulan na sa Lunes, Oktubre 26, ang pamamahagi ng libreng bisikleta sa mga nawalan ng trabaho dahil sa COVID-19 pandemic, ayon sa Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).

Ayon kay Atty Karina Perida-Trayvilla, direktor ng DOLE – Bureau of Workers and Special Concerns, layunin ng proyekto na tulungan ang mga Pilipinong magkaroon ng trabaho sa gitna na rin ng mataas na demand para sa delivery ng food at non-food items.

“Starting Monday (October 26) to Wednesday, October 28, we will be awarding, it will be held at the DOLE office,” ani Trayvilla.

“We will be giving a total of 900 free bikes for the initial implementation of this project,” dagdag pa niya.

Ang mga bisikleta ay ibibigay lamang sa mga lubhang naapektuhan ng krisis.

Sa mga nais makakuha ng bisikleta, maaari silang pumunta sa pinakamalapit na DOLE field office of sa public employment service office para sa gagawing profiling.

Ang mga magku-qualify sa proyekto ay maaaring sumailalim sa social preparation training upang maturuan ng traffic regulations at iba pang panuntunan upang maging deliver service riders.

Sasailalim rin sila sa financial literacy at productivity training katuwang ang regional tripartite wages and productivity board.

Ibabahagi rin sa kanila ang occupational safety at health standards ng isa pang ahensiya na nasa ilalim ng DOLE.

Ayon sa DOLE, isasagawa rin ang ganitong proyekto sa iba pang regional offices.

Kingdom of Bahrain lifts suspension on domestic workers — DOLE

Marje Pelayo   •   September 17, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) on Tuesday (September 14) confirmed that the Kingdom of Bahrain has lifted its temporary suspension on household service workers.

This means that the Kingdom has resumed the recruitment of domestic workers.

In an advisory, the agency said the announcement was made a month after the renewal of the issuance of work permits of expatriate skilled workers last August 9.

According to its report to Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III, the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) in Bahrain added that Filipino workers are preferred by most employers in the kingdom in reopening their doors to migrant workers.

It said that the Kingdom’s Labor Market Regulatory Authority (LMRA) has warned would-be employers of migrant domestic workers to refrain from engaging the services of unlicensed domestic manpower agencies in hiring domestic workers. 

Such is to ensure that mitigation measures against the spread of COVID-19 are strictly followed and workers’ rights are upheld and protected, the agency said.

Based on data from POLO–Bahrain, the number of Filipino domestic workers in the Kingdom declined by 9% from January 2019 to June 2020. 

From 18,663 domestic workers in 2019, only 16,576 remained as of June 2020, the agency said.

The ban was announced in March due to coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

DOLE, DTI mandate regular COVID-19 tests for workers

Marje Pelayo   •   August 17, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said that workers in several sectors will be required to undergo regular real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) tests.

The said measure, which took effect Saturday (August 15), is contained in the Joint Memorandum Circular No. 20-04 series of 2020, or DTI and DOLE Supplemental Guidelines on Workplace Prevention and Control of COVID-19.

It aims at preventing the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in workplaces, according to Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III.

It covers all workers in the hospitality and tourism sectors, manufacturing companies, including frontline and economic priority employees.

The Secretary emphasized, however, that the tests must be administered free of charge.

“The COVID-19 testing must be at no cost to the employees,” he said.

“This is so far the most comprehensive set of guidelines for the safety and protection of workers and employees in workplaces. The strict observance of these health protocols will make a big  difference in our long-drawn battle to defeat Covid 19 and ensure the productivity of the Filipino workforce,” he added.

Specifically identified to undergo the RT–PCR test include workers in:

  • tourist zones
  • local manufacturing companies
  • transport and logistics
  • food retail
  • education
  • financial services
  • non-food retail services
  • public market
  • construction
  • water supply
  • sewerage and waste management
  • public sector
  • mass media

The joint memorandum covers all establishments, projects, sites, including establishments located inside special economic zones and other investment promotion agencies, and all other places where work is being undertaken in all branches of economic activity, except in the public sector.

The Employers Confederation of the Philippines (ECOP) said it still need to clarify the details of the memorandum with DOLE. 

According to ECOP President Sergio Ortiz-Luis Jr., about 90% of businesses in the country are micro enterprises and about 50% of them have already closed.

ECOP said these enterprises might decide to permanently close due to the impact of the COVID-19 crisis. 

“Even nga iyong small matters like face mask and face shield, issue pa rin sa ibang kumpanya. Napakaliit na bagay noon. Iyong testing pa ba [Even the small matters like face masks and face shield remain an issue with other companies. Those are actually small items. How much more with the (RT-PCR) testing],” Luis concluded. MNP (with inputs from Rey Pelayo)

REACH US

The Philippine Broadcast Hub

UNTV, 915 Barangay Philam,

EDSA, Quezon City M.M. 1104

(+632) 8396-8688 (Tel)

info@untv-newsandrescue.com (General inquiries)

ABOUT UNTV

UNTV is a major TV broadcast network with 24-hour programming. An Ultra High Frequency station with strong brand content that appeal to everyone, UNTV is one of the most trusted and successful Philippine networks that guarantees wholesome and quality viewing experience.