DOLE: Over 1 million Filipinos lose jobs due to COVID-19

MANILA, Philippines – Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III on Sunday appealed anew to big businesses to continue paying their workers and employees despite their being unable to work for the duration of the extended community quarantine.
DOLE: Over 1 million Filipinos lose jobs due to COVID-19

The labor chief made the call as the number of displaced workers breached the 1-million mark with 98 percent of close to 42,000 reporting establishments are seeking the P5,000-one-time assistance of DOLE under its social amelioration scheme COVID-19 Adjustment Measures Program (CAMP).

“I once again knock in the kind hearts of our employers, especially the conglomerates and big businesses. Please extend further your generosity to your employees and workers. Your good-heartedness and compassion is a great help to the government,” Secretary Bello said.

Based on reports from DOLE regional offices, some 1,048,649 workers in the formal sector were either affected by temporary closures or flexible work arrangements. This figure is on top of the close to quarter of a million informal sector workers needing assistance under the Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/ Displaced Workers Program-Barangay Ko, Bahay ko (TUPAD-BKBK) program.

As of April 11, Saturday, the highest displacement was recorded in Metro Manila with about 246,810 workers, followed by Central Luzon at 179,875; Calabarzon with 99,178; Davao region at 90,414 and Region 2 with 75,189; followed by Central Visayas with 51,150; Cordillera region at 46,614 and Region 10 with 46,351 and the Bicol region with 41,322.

Region 6 recorded 36,526 with MIMAROPA at 30,721 workers. The areas with the least affected workers are CARAGA at 26,981; Region 8 at 24,940; Region 9 with 24,664; Region 1 at 17,378 and Region 12 at 11,536.

Most of the affected were displaced by the temporary closure of about 31,612 establishments involving 719,649 workers, with another 10,224 enterprises resorting to flexible work arrangements which include reduction of workdays, work rotation, forced leave and work from home or telecommuting affecting 366,404 workers.

Majority of those workers belong to manufacturing, hotel, restaurants and tourism-related sectors, and education.

CAMP program implementer OIC Asst. Secretary Dominique Rubia-Tutay said DOLE was already able to assist about 180,000 workers with close to P900 million. With P1.61 billion in available funds under the program, the labor department will reach about 322,000 workers with the assistance, Tutay said.

Aside from CAMP, the labor department also provides assistance under the TUPAD-BKBK program.

Director Karen Trayvilla of the Bureau of Workers with Special Concerns (BWSC) said the TUPAD-BKBK program has so far extended assistance to some 138,000 informal sector workers as of Friday, April 10, and processed a total of 235,949 beneficiaries under the program.

— The Summit Express

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