Villavende died from shock, multiple injuries based on autopsy report

Aileen Cerrudo   •   January 7, 2020   •   1418

Jeanelyn Villavende

Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW) Jeanelyn Villavende died of “heart, respiration failure” due to shock and multiple injuries, based on the autopsy report released by the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III confirmed on Monday (January 6) they have already received the autopsy report of Villavende, who was allegedly killed by her female employer last December.

Bello also said Villavende might have been beaten to death, based on the autopsy report conducted in Kuwait.

He also calls for the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to conduct their own autopsy report.—AAC (with reports from Aiko Miguel)

DOLE assures job security for Filipino crew in cruise ship

Aileen Cerrudo   •   February 18, 2020

The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) has assured job security for the Filipino crew in the quarantined cruise ship Diamond Princess.

DOLE Usec. Ana Dione. said the labor attache of the Philippines in Japan is already coordinating with the Japanese company that owns the Diamond Princess for the job security of the repatriated Filipino crew.

“Tutulong and DOLE diyan through our POLO [Philippine Overseas Labor Office] offices na i-secure iyong kanilang trabaho, now kung mag-desisyon sila kung babalik o hindi nasa kanila na iyon (DOLE will help through our POLO offices in securing their jobs. Now, it is their decision if they wish to return or not),” she said.

After the 14-day quarantine on Wednesday (February 19), the DOLE said they are prepared to repatriate the over 500 Filipino crew and passengers.

“Exact date ay hindi natin iyan kayang sabihin sa ngayon, (we cannot say the exact date as of now) but we are hoping that within this month,” according to Dione.

The repatriated Filipinos will also undergo the 14-day quarantine period, based on the protocol of the Department of Health (DOH).—AAC (with reports from Dante Amento)

DOLE urges DOH to lift travel ban to Taiwan

Robie de Guzman   •   February 13, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) on Thursday said it has requested the Department of Health (DOH) to lift the travel ban for overseas Filipino workers (OFW) to Taiwan amid the threat of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

In a statement, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said he has coordinated with the DOH for his request to review its decision and lift the temporary travel ban soon.

“For those who are affected by the travel ban in Taiwan, we ask for your patience and in a few days, there will be a review. While waiting for the lifting of the ban, we are providing financial assistance,” Bello said.

The labor chief assured that stranded overseas workers who are members of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) will receive P10,000 financial assistance amid the crisis.

Affected OFWs will also be provided with accommodation, food and transportation assistance.

Bello asked stranded OFWs to wait for the result of the assessment for the next three to five days.

“We are seeking understanding from our OFWs because the implementation of a temporary ban by the DOH is for your own safety as well,” he said.

“We hope for a possible lifting of the ban in a few days,” he added.

The Philippine government earlier imposed a travel ban on China and its special administrative regions, Hong Kong and Macau, in an effort to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus. It later expanded the travel restrictions to include Taiwan.

The Taiwanese government questioned the Philippines’ move and reportedly warned to impose countermeasures should the latter keeps the entry ban.

Quarantined OFW in Hong Kong tests negative for nCoV – DFA

Robie de Guzman   •   February 7, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Hong Kong health authorities have released from quarantine one of the two Filipino domestic workers after she tested negative for the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said Friday.

The Filipino worker was given a clean bill of health and is now discharged after the 14-day quarantine period, Foreign Affairs Undersecretary for Civilian Security and Consular Concerns Brigido Dulay said in a statement.

“She is now resting in her employer’s home which has been thoroughly sanitized by the Hong Kong Department of Health,” the DFA added.

The Filipino worker was quarantined after she was exposed to her employers who tested positive for the deadly virus.

The DFA said that although healthy and asymptomatic, the worker was put under quarantine after her employer became the second victim to test positive for nCoV outside mainland China.

Authorities earlier reported that another Filipino worker in Hong Kong is also being observed in a quarantine camp for coming in contact with her virus-infected employers.

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