BACOLOD

Labor leader: Government should prepare jobs for returning OFWs

THE government should prepare jobs for returning contract workers from the conflict-ridden Iraq and other Middle East countries.

This was stated by Roland de la Cruz, National Congress of Unions in the Sugar Industry of the Philippines (Nacusip) national president and Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP) vice president, on Thursday, January 9, 2020 amid the conflict between the United States (US) and Iran.

"Our OFWs (overseas Filipino workers) should be repatriated as soon as possible because their lives are in danger every day," Dela Cruz said.

He cited the data showing that at present there are still 1.2 million overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in Middle Eastern countries.

Dela Cruz pointed out reports that the repatriation of OFWs in the Middle East is not easy because they need to pass by several danger zones before they could reach the nearest airport.

"But the government should prepare not only a band aide solution for the affected OFWs. They should be given jobs to sustain the needs of their respective families. If the government spends a lot of money for its 'Build, Build, Build' programs, they should also come up with project that would provide employment for the affected OFWs," he said.

He said while there are videos showing that no OFWs were hurt in the attacks between the US and Iraq, the situation created much worry to their families in the Philippines.

Dela Cruz is also supporting the move of sending Filipino forces in Iraq to secure and assist the repatriation of OFWs.


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