354 distressed OFWs from Saudi Arabia set to arrive in PHL – DOLE

Robie de Guzman   •   July 29, 2020   •   974

MANILA, Philippines – Some 354 distressed overseas Filipino workers repatriated from Saudi Arabia are set to arrive in the country on Wednesday, the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said.

In a statement, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said the group of repatriated Filipinos is expected to land in Manila on Wednesday afternoon onboard a chartered flight.

In a report to Bello, Labor Attache Nasser Mustafa said majority of the passengers are distressed OFWs from Philippine Overseas Labor Office’s Bahay Kalinga in Riyadh, and from temporary shelters maintained by the POLOs in the Eastern Region of Saudi Arabia.

Also included in the flight are 12 workers from Jussur Emdad, 45 workers from Arkad Co., as well as 14 OFWs previously employed by Abdullah Aldossary, Azmeel Contracting Co., Rakan Trading, which are all based in the Eastern Region of Saudi Arabia.

These OFWs joined a number of OFWs who have worked for Freyssinet, Jussur Emdad, Samana Company and Rent Human Resources as well as walk-in OFWs whose exit visas were facilitated by the labor office in Riyadh, Bello added.

The labor chief said he has instructed the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) to provide all necessary assistance to the returning Filipino workers.

The repatriation of the OFWs is in line with the department’s efforts to provide assistance to OFWs adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Unfortunately, some of our OFWs have been greatly impacted by the pandemic and we hope that our repatriation efforts would bring them comfort as they will soon join their families and loved ones,” Bello said.

DOLE also reported that so far, more than 111,400 returning OFWs have been transported to their respective provinces.

The last batch of OFWs to be sent home are 3,035 workers who took their rides in OWWA-arranged buses and other means of transportation on Monday.  

Labor dept asks employers to provide workers with paid isolation, quarantine leave benefits

Robie de Guzman   •   January 17, 2022

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) on Monday urged employers in the private sector to provide paid leave benefits to workers who have to undergo isolation or quarantine period due to COVID-19.

In a labor advisory, DOLE said this is to “ensure safe and humane working conditions” amid the rising cases of coronavirus in the country.

The labor department said employers in the private sector are encouraged to adopt and implement appropriate paid isolation and quarantine leave program, on top of the existing leave benefits under the company policy. Leave benefits under the Collective Bargaining Agreement, the Labor Code of the Philippines, and special laws should be separately applied.

“The paid isolation and quarantine leaves shall be without prejudice to other benefits provided by the Social Security System and the Employees Compensation Commission,” it added.

DOLE said its advisory applies to all establishments, employers, and their employees in the private sector.

Under the updated guidelines from the Department of Health, fully vaccinated COVID-19 patients who are asymptomatic or with mild symptoms need to isolate for seven days while those who are unvaccinated or partially vaccinated need to complete the isolation period for 10 days.

The isolation period for moderate cases is 10 days while those with severe and critical symptoms, and immunocompromised would have to isolate for 21 days.

The quarantine period for fully vaccinated asymptomatic close contacts has been shortened to five days.

Isolation is for individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19 while quarantine is for those who have been exposed and can possibly develop an infection.

DOLE, may ayuda sa mga empleyadong naapektuhan ng ipinaiiral na COVID-19 Alert Level 3

Robie de Guzman   •   January 17, 2022

MANILA, Philippines – Tiniyak ng Department of Labor and Employment na may matatanggap na ayuda ang mga manggagawa na naapektuhan ng ipinaiiral na COVID-19 Alert Level 3 sa ilang bahagi ng bansa.

Ayon kay DOLE Assistant Secretary Dominique Rubia-Tutay, P1 bilyon ang ilalalan nilang pondo para sa one-time financial assistance sa formal sector workers na apektado ang trabaho dahil sa umiiral na alert level 3.

Sa pagtaya ng kagawaran, mahigit sa 30,000 empleyado ang naapektuhan ng paghihigpit ng COVID-19 restrictions mula Enero 1 hanggang 15.

Nasa 11,500 sa mga ito ay mula sa 759 establisimyento ang permanenteng nawalan ng trabaho habang 20,190 naman mula sa 508 establisimyento ang nasa flexible work arrangement o pansamantalang nawalan ng trabaho.

Sa ilalim ng COVID-19 adjustment measures program (CAMP), bibigyan ng P5,000 na ayuda ang bawat formal sector workers na apektado ng kasalukuyang restrictions.

Nauna nang sinabi ng DOLE na maaaring umabot sa 200,000 empleyado sa Metro Manila ang maapektuhan dahil sa pagtaas ng alert level.

Madadagdagan pa ito dahil mas dumami pa ang mga lugar na isinailalim sa Alert Level 3, kabilang na dito ang Rizal, Batangas, Cavite, Laguna, at Baguio City.

Sa ngayon, ayon kay Tutay, ay pinag-aaralan pa ng DOLE ang guidelines para sa ipamimigay na ayuda.

“Iyon pong guidelines ay atin ipe-present po natin sa ating kalihim at senior officials anytime soon at kapag ito po ay naaprubahan na po niya ay ready na po to implement CAMP 2022,” ang wika ng opisyal.

Sa Martes ay magpupulong aniya ang mga opisyal ng DOLE para isapinal ang guidelines. Inaasahang masisimulan ang distribusyon ng cash aid sa susunod na linggo.

Para sa mga nais mag-apply para sa camp, maaring mag-register sa reports.dole.gov.ph at isumite ang kinakailangang data para ma-proseso ang application.

Maliban sa CAMP ay tuloy rin ang iba pang programa ng DOLE para matulungan ang mga manggagawang labis na naapektuhan ng pandemya.

“Nandiyan pa rin po ang ating emergency employment under TUPAD para naman po doon sa ating mga informal sector workers natin kung saan pwede po silang makapag-trabaho ng minimum of 10 days para po magkakita sila ng minimum wage in their region and then maryoon din po tayong mga livelihood assistance para po sa mga may gustong magumpisa ng sarili nilang negosyo,” ang wika ni Tutay. (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Aileen Cerrudo)

 

DOLE partners with PGH to manage OFW hospital

Robie de Guzman   •   January 17, 2022

The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said it has tapped the Philippine General Hospital to help manage the clinical services of the country’s first hospital for overseas Filipino workers (OFW).

In a statement, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said a memorandum of understanding (MOU) was signed between DOLE and the PGH last Friday at the nearly completed OFW Hospital in San Fernando, Pampanga,

Bello expressed optimism over the partnership, saying “the expertise of the government’s top medical institution will add quality to the service and prestige to the name of the facility meant to provide the health requirements of OFWs.”

“In serving the health needs of our modern-day heroes, we need the champion in saving lives. Thank you PGH for helping us,” Bello added.

Under the MOU, PGH will be helping the OFW Hospital in the training of clinical and administrative personnel, planning and acquisition of hospital equipment, and formulation of clinical and fiscal process flow.

It will also guide the hospital in the creation of electronic medical records and hospital information systems, and planning of infrastructure layout in relation to clinical services.

Aside from PGH, DOLE said the Philippine Amusement Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR), Bloomberry Cultural Foundation Incorporated (BCFI), and the Pampanga Provincial Government also helped in constructing the 100-bed hospital building.

The construction of the OFW hospital is scheduled to be finished in March this year, it added.

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