Official says OFW department won’t promote overseas employment

THE Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said the creation of a department focusing on overseas Filipino workers does not mean that the Philippine government will be adopting overseas employment as a national policy.

"We repeat that we have no policy to promote overseas employment as a national policy," Labor Undersecretary Joji Aragon said in a televised press briefing on Friday, October 30, 2020.

Last Tuesday, President Rodrigo Duterte renewed his call for the passage of a measure that will create a Department of OFWs, saying it is one of his 2016 campaign promises.

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III supported the call of Duterte saying a department that will solely attend to the needs, welfare, and protection of OFWs is really necessary.

Aragon seconded Bello, saying having such an agency will be advantageous to all OFWs.

"Can you imagine bundling all of the services, programs, and policies of the whole government for OFWs, instead of the current setup of having them separated," she said.

"It would be better if there is one roof that will help OFWs from pre-employment, welfare and protection, and giving them all the benefits and the information they need," added Aragon.

The House of Representatives approved on third and final reading the bill known as the Department of Filipinos Overseas Act in March 2020.

The Senate has yet to pass its version of the bill. (HDT/SunStar Philippines)


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