On February 21, the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) held a press conference on the plight of OFWs in Kuwait. Secretary Silvestre Bello III headed the conference together with other Undersecretaries.
Sec.Bello III claimed DOLE is bringing the battle against illegal recruiters to a higher level. Undersecretary Bernard Olalia claimed POEA had resolved pending cases involving agencies whom they found guilty. He then named the private recruitment agencies whom they ordered the cancellation of license as penalty.
DOLE will also send a technical working group to Kuwait and negotiate with their counterpart to ensure the protection of OFWs. Their tentative schedule will be on the 28th of this month.
Undersecretary Claro Arellano claimed that they are to negotiate prior to the signing of a Memorandum of Agreement which includes allowing the Filipinos to hold their passport or to deposit it to the LaborAttache’ in coordination with the Philippine Embassy and to allow the use of mobile phones so OFWs may contact their families.
The MOA will be finalized soon as they are eyeing for the Philippines and Kuwait to sign the agreement either 1st or 2nd week of March 2018.
In their objective to further protect the OFWs from abuse, DOLE will soon implement a web-based alert system, an application which OFWs may download. The application has an “alert” button which they could press at the time they needed help. This will be implemented as soon as the Memorandum of Agreement be signed.
- Bringing battle vs illegal recruitment to a higher level.
- Reinvigorate the one-stop shop for returning OFWs.
- Send a team to Kuwait, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia to ensure OFW protection.
- Web-based alert system for OFWs to be introduced in Kuwait soon after MOA signing.
- OFWs be allowed to hold their passports or leave them with PH labor attache.
- OFWs be allowed to keep their mobile phones for communication with their family.
The press conference was concluded with this statement from Sec. Bello III.
“With these directives, we now set in motion the mechanisms to prevent a repeat of the tragedy that befell Joanna Daniela Demafelis. With these small steps, we hope to help guarantee the safety and security of our migrant heroes.”
See below :
WATCH: DOLE holds a briefing on the plight of Filipino workers in Kuwait.HIGHLIGHTS:- DOLE Sec. Silvestre Bello III: We are bringing battle vs illegal recruitment to a higher level.- OWWA Admin Hans Cacdac: We will reinvigorate the one-stop shop foe returning OFWs.- DOLE will send a team to Kuwait, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia to ensure OFW protection. – DOLE: Web-based alert system for OFWs to be introduced in Kuwait soon after MOA signing.- DOLE USec. Claro Arellano: In the negotiation for the MOA, we are requesting that OFWs be allowed to hold their passports or leave them with PH labor attache.- Arellano: In the negotiation for the MOA, we are also requesting that OFWs be allowed to keep their mobile phones for communication with their family.
Posted by ABS-CBN News on Tuesday, February 20, 2018