March 1, 2011
The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration, Department of Labor and Employment, Technical Education and Skills Development Authority, and Department of Trade and Industry should work together to provide safety nets for returning OFWs from Libya and the Middle East. Bringing them home is the first step. Providing them the needed support to tide them over after being displaced is the next challenge.
The sudden job loss will have a tremendous impact on their day to day existence. OWWA funds must be put to good use, and now is the time to use it to provide help in the interim to our citizens in need. Our government must be ready to cushion the impact by providing financial assistance to these displaced workers. The fees collected from every overseas worker even before they can work abroad should now be channeled back to the workers when they need it most. And this begins with having a system in place to bring them home in times of crisis in the countries they work in, and up to providing options for their readjustment back here at home.