Manila Times | (DMW) Sec. Susan “Toots” Ople
IN the first 100 days of the Marcos administration, the (DMW) said there were more employment opportunities for overseas Filipino workers (OFWs), programs offered for children of OFWs and a quicker response time to repatriation requests.
In a report, Migrant Workers Secretary Susan Ople said based on data gathered by the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA), 255,429 workers landed jobs abroad in the first 100 days of the Marcos administration.
Ople said the number is higher by 45 percent compared to the deployment of migrant workers from July to October last year.
She noted that the DMW expects higher deployment figures this year due to the lifting of the restrictions in the sending of OFWs to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, a steady increase in the demand for Filipino seafarers and the emergence of new labor markets requiring workers of various skills.
The department is maintaining a One Repatriation Command Center (ORCC) to ensure that distressed OFWs are able to come home to their respective families.
In the first 100 days of the Marcos administration, the ORCC received more than 5,066 requests for repatriation assistance and 1,635 were resolved.
Ople said the rest of the cases are under negotiation in various overseas labor posts as some require legal and medical assistance.
She also cited the flagship program of the DMW for the children of Filipino migrant workers.
Through the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), the children of OFWs are being taught financial literacy, culture and the arts, and mental wellness.
The DMW chief said they have also rolled out community-based programs for OFW children to build their self-esteem and gain access to new friends and creative courses.
Ople expressed hope that by the end of the year, the DMW will be able to launch the digital version of its Overseas Employment Certificate, see the legislative approval of its first-ever budget for 2023, and implement ease of doing business strategies that would lead to faster and safer deployment of OFWs.