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Thursday, August 30, 2012

DOLE: PHL hopes no more Pinoy maids will be abused by 2016


The Philippine government is hoping that no Filipino domestic worker will be abused by 2016, Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz told GMA News Online on Wednesday.

In a phone interview, Baldoz said the 2016 target is part of a five-year program of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) against the abuse of overseas Filipino household helpers.
 
“The five-year phase-out program [against abusive employer] address exploitation and maltreatment against OFW household service workers,” Baldoz said.
 
“By 2016, dapat wala na tayong mabalitaan na may household service worker na tumakas dahil siya ay critically abused, verbally or sexually. We hope that they will be with good and qualified employers only,” she added.

POEA database
 
The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration’s (POEA) database containing the names of employers with complaints is now under review.

POEA is an attached agency of the DOLE.

Baldoz said an employer who is included in a POEA blacklist will be banned from hiring Filipino domestic workers.
 
“The program set a firm signal against abusive employers.  If we are strictly screening employers, then we give them second thoughts [on maltreatment or abuse against HSW]. They may eventually change their attitudes and treat our OFWs humanely by providing right wages, and treating them as part of the family,” Baldoz said.

Alternative employment
 
Aside from banning abusive employers, the five-year program also aims to provide alternative employment to overseas domestic helpers, especially those who have bachelor degrees.
 
According to a report of the news site Gulf News, migrant workers advocate Susan Ople, president of the Blas F. Ople Policy Centre, lauded the government’s action.
 
“The life of a domestic worker, wherever she is, is fraught with physical, emotional, and financial vulnerabilities," Ople told Gulf News.

"I am glad that the Philippine government is planning an exit strategy for this particular sector with an eye towards better jobs here at home,” she added.  - VVP, GMA News

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