While it finds the partial lifting of deployment ban of OFWs to Kuwait laudable, the Associated Labor Unions-Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (ALU-TUCP) on Tuesday said a policy that will make overseas employment a choice will be better.
In a statement, ALU-TUCP spokesperson Alan Tanjusay said stressed that “there is an equivalent unquantifiable social cost to Filipino families” when parents must go abroad to ensure their family’s survival.
Though the need to go overseas is understandable, he said ALU-TUCP is hoping that government policy will improve to the point that Filipinos will no longer need to migrate to secure their livelihoods.
“While it is also good to have OFWs remittance contribute money positively to our domestic economy, it is our hope that someday soon government policy will no longer encourage Filipinos to work anywhere abroad to sustain their families to live in dignified and decent lives,” Tanjusay said.
The government partially lifted the deployment ban following the signing of a memorandum of understanding between the Philippines and Kuwait on the protection of OFWs.
Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said reforms must be instated before the ban could be fully lifted to cover newly hired domestic workers.
The ban came after the discovery of the body of Joanna Demafelis, a Filipino domestic worker allegedly killed by her employers and hidden in a freezer in an apartment unit previously occupied by the suspects.
Negotiations for the MOU nearly fell through following the rescue of distressed OFWs by the Philippine Embassy staff — an operation that angered Kuwaiti officials, prompting them to expel Philippine Ambassador Renato Villa and recall their envoy in Manila. —Rie Takumi/KBK, GMA News