The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) has committed to provide emergency employment assistance for around 3,000 Bicol workers who were displaced or otherwise affected by Tropical Depression Usman.
According to Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III, the agency has set aside P10 million for the initial beneficiaries and their families through their Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers (TUPAD) program. Providing displaced workers with emergency employment will provide them with immediate short-term income and help them recover from the damage Usman brought to the Bicol Region.
“Most of the affected families of (Tropical Depression) Usman were farmers and farm workers, and we aim to provide immediate assistance to these affected workers by giving them temporary income-support while still coping up with the devastation brought by the typhoon,” Bello said in a statement on Saturday.
TUPAD provides its beneficiaries with emergency employment in the form of 10-day community work. The minimum salary of P305 per day is guaranteed for workers.
Bello, who on Friday joined PResident Rodrigo Duterte in visiting the most devastated areas in Bicol, said that DOLE is already conducting profiling of displaced workers in priority areas in the region. Identified priority communities include Sangay, Camarines Sur and Tiwi, Albay. The profiling is expected to help the department reach more affected employees.
DOLE also offers other assistance programs for displaced workers, including skills training, livelihood assistance, and low-interest grants and loans to help workers recover from the calamity.
Families of active OFWs affected by Usman will be provided P3,000 in assistance by the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA). The families of inactive OFWs will receive P1,500 from the same agency.