Bello wants board exam for nurses scrapped

Marje Pelayo   •   July 7, 2021   •   839

MANILA, Philippines — Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III wants the board exam for newly graduated nurses to be scrapped.

Bello questioned why nurses need a board exam when they have gone through several examinations throughout the four years of their collegiate study, especially if their school is accredited by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED).

“Sabi ko napakamahal kumuha ng kursong nursing. Kukuha sila ng 4 years. After graduating kukuha sila ng board exam. Bakit pa kailangan ng board exam [kung] ilang exam ang dinaanan nila sa nursing.” Bello said.

“Sabi ko pagaralan nyo yan and then we can recommend to congress to tanggalin na yung exam exam na yan. Gastos sa ating mga nurses,” he added.

The Labor Chief asked the Philippine Nurses Association and the Board of Nursing to look into his argument though it may seem impossible.

“Syempre we respect his opinion but it needs to be studied. As of now, it cannot be done because we have an existing law that governs it. Personally, board exams serve as the check and balance for the quality of education we are producing in schools,” explained Philippine Nurses Association President Melbert Reyes.

“For nursing parang hindi possible iyan and also in other medical courses kasi buhay yung hinahawakan natin and we need to ensure that health professionals are competent enough to do their duties and responsibilities,” he added.

In July and September, about 9,000 nurses are scheduled to take the annual board exam.

Bello hopes all of them pass the examination as the country needs their services especially at this time of the pandemic.

Hontiveros urges DOLE to address labor abuses reported by food delivery drivers

Aileen Cerrudo   •   July 19, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—Senator Risa Hontiveros is urging the Department of Labor and Employment to address the issue of labor abuses reported by food delivery drivers.

The senator made the call after food delivery app Food Panda suspended at least 500 accredited riders in Davao City after participating in a unity ride in support of other riders who were suspended and denied access to the mobile app for 10 years.

The group is also complaining about the recent fare adjustment which significantly decreased their earnings to as low as P20.00 per ride.

Nananawagan ako sa DOLE na aksyunan agad ang hinaing ng ating delivery riders na nakararanas ng panggigipit sa mobile app operators,” she said.

(I am urging DOLE to address the complaints of our delivery riders who are experiencing problems with mobile app operators.)

Hontiveros called on DOLE to look into the plight of food delivery riders in Davao. She said there should also be guidelines and labor standards to protect the welfare of the riders.

“Failure to act on such grievances is negligence on the part of the government,” she said.

The senator also filed a resolution seeking an investigation into the working conditions of the so-called ‘gig economy’, which includes delivery riders, to address labor issues surrounding the emerging sector. AAC

 

 

DOLE lifts suspension of OFW deployment to Israel

Aileen Cerrudo   •   July 14, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) on Wednesday (July 14) lifted the suspension of deployment of Filipino workers to Israel.

DOLE issued a memorandum, stating that Filipino workers can be deployed to Israel effective immediately after an almost two-month ban.

DOLE Secretary Silvestre Bello III said the decision was based on the recommendation of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) due to the low-level incidents between the Israel Defense Force and Palestinian militant groups. This was after Israel and Hamas agreed to a ceasefire in May.

On May 20, 2021, DOLE suspended the deployment of Filipino workers due to the tension between the Israel Defense Force and Palestine. AAC

Filipino finance professionals needed in the UK — DOLE

Marje Pelayo   •   July 12, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) announced employment opportunities for Filipino professionals in the United Kingdom.

According to DOLE, the UK is gearing up for recruitment of interested applicants from the financial sector based on a report by London Labor Attaché Amuerfina Reyes.

Reyes said, apart from higher demand in health care services, the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) also noted a high demand for specific positions such as accountants, comptrollers, auditors, and also some jobs in the agriculture sector, as seasonal workers.

“Based on the job orders that we have been receiving, there are emerging opportunities for our overseas Filipino workers here in the financial sector. We can see an increase in the demand for accountants and auditors. Another opportunity is up for those seasonal agricultural workers in the potato farms,” Reyes said.

The POLO official added that in light of the urgent need and high-demand for nurses in the UK, the labor office has been getting more job orders and contracts for senior health care workers due to the spread of COVID-19 cases in various European countries.

“Here in the UK, there is a big demand for nurses and healthcare-related jobs because of the COVID-19 pandemic, they saw the need for this, she said.

“They prefer to hire Filipino workers first not only for our good work ethics but because we work passionately from the heart,” she added.

Reyes also said the UK needs about 50,000 nurses until the year 2024.

The official said Filipino workers in the UK are generally in a good working environment.

Upon their arrival in the UK, Pinoy nurses are already being scheduled for vaccination following the end of their quarantine period.

Reyes said nurses in the UK are getting £19,000 to £20,000 per year. If they pass the local exam for nurses, they will receive £23,000 to £24,000 per year.

“They are getting more from overtime pay, on top of their opportunity of becoming permanent residents after 5 years, if their track records are clean,” the POLO official concluded.

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