BSAIII action plan on overseas Filipino workers (OFWs)

Platform for Overseas Filipino Workers

Action Plan on overseas Filipino workers (OFWs)

For more than three decades, the Philippines has witnessed the migration of hundreds of thousands of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) to take up work in other countries. While there are economic benefits from overseas employment, there are attendant social costs such as the abuse, maltreatment, and discrimination of Filipino migrant workers and the psychosocial impacts of the separation of family members. As a policy, working away from one’s home and family should be a product of choice, not necessity.

As President, Noynoy Aquino commits to create jobs at home so that working abroad will be out of choice, not necessity; and guarantee the welfare and protection of OFWs.

  • An Aquino Government will uphold the State’s policy of not pursuing overseas employment as a development strategy and establish concrete policies and steps towards more sustainable alternatives.
  • Prioritize the protection of overseas Filipino workers and their families
    • Implement policies to establish a higher standard of protection and promote the empowerment of migrants and their families.
    • Review the continued deployment of workers to countries which are high- and medium-risk areas, as well the continued deployment of workers in high-risk occupations
  • Improve and enhance government’s services and resources for OFWs and their families
    • Create an efficient “one-stop shop” for processing applications for overseas work and seeking redress for grievances in order to streamline the bureaucracy, cut down on complicated and unnecessary procedures, and reduce avenues for corruption.
    • Audit the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration to rationalize the management of its funds, in terms of the benefits provided as well as how the funds are invested.
    • Transform Philippine embassies, consular offices and Philippine Overseas Labor Offices (POLOs) into centers of care and service for overseas workers by assigning more foreign service officers to posts where there are many OFWs and train them in the needs of the communities they serve.
    • Invest in training and upgrading the skills of our overseas workers. TESDA will formally and regularly be involved in training OFWs and we will hire returning OFWs to conduct training so that they may transfer skills learned abroad.
    • Pursue and prosecute those engaging in illegal and predatory activities, including fixers, scammers and especially traffickers that target women and children. We will fully implement the Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003.
    • Assist OFWs in achieving financial stability that also contributes to the Philippines’ development through training, investment and savings programs.
    • Address the social costs of migration by working closely with communities and families of OFWs to provide effective social welfare services such as counseling and pre-departure orientation seminars
    • Improve the seafarers’ upgrading program, credit/loaning program, self-insurance coverage program, which includes life insurance, burial benefit and disability and dismemberment benefits, and reintegration program.
    • Complete a global trading master plan that aims to establish worldwide trading posts that rely on the labor, knowledge and entrepreneurial spirit of Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs).
  • Engage the participation of the migrant sector and civil society in governance
    • Involve civil society and migrants themselves in developing, implementing and reviewing policies and programs related to the migrant sector
    • Support the creation or strengthening of community-based support groups for families of OFWs
  • Strengthen re-integration programs for returning migrants
    • Facilitate the re-integration of returning OFWs by favorable terms of investment, tax incentives, access to government financial institutions and other benefits that are offered to foreign investors.

[Archived from the official campaign web site of President Benigno S. “Noynoy” Aquino III]

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