The newly constituted governmental organisation tasked with advocating for the welfare of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs), the Department of Migrant Workers (DMW), will be fully functioning in 2023.
Also Read: From POEA Online to DMW Online
Labor Secretary Bienvenido Laguesma made the statement at a news conference in Quezon City, where the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) and the Department of Migrant Workers (DMW) unveiled a joint circular.
DOLE Secretary Eyes DMW to Go ‘Fully Operational’ by 2023
The joint circular eases the transition of at least six labour agencies from DOLE to DMW, clearing the way for DMW to become a full-fledged government department, the Philippine Information Agency reported.
The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA), the Philippine Overseas Labor Offices (POLOs), the International Labor Affairs Bureau (ILAB), the National Reintegration Center for Overseas Filipino Workers (NRCO), the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), and the National Maritime Polytechnic (NMP) are among the organizations mentioned.
The transition must be completed within two years, according to Republic Act 11641, the law that established the DMW.
Contrary to President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.’s goal of offering faster service to Filipino migrant labourers, Laguesma regarded the mandated duration excessively long.
“Masyadong matagal ang dalawang taon. Why wait that long when we can complete the transition earlier for the benefit of our beloved OFWs,” Laguesma explained.
The Labor secretary refuted rumors of railroading in the transition of DOLE-affiliated organizations to DMW.
“There’s nothing illegal in the transition. We are just ramping up efforts to make DMW operational as early as possible,” Laguesma said.
The introduction of a joint circular by DOLE and DMW yesterday, the first of its type, is just one of the actions taken by the two agencies to advance DMW’s full establishment, he stated.
While the move will free the DOLE of OFW-related tasks, it will also allow the department to focus on its primary objective of dealing with local employment.
“By focusing on our mandate, DOLE will be rendering faster and quality service to our workers in the country,” he said.
“In the same manner, DMW will be working exclusively for our OFWs, meaning their time and effort would center on the Filipino migrant workers which is an efficient way of serving our modern-day heroes,” he added.
Laguesma stated that she and DMW Secretary Susan ‘Toots’ Ople “had a lengthy professional and personal history together,” and vowed his unwavering support.
“She has my full backing as she nurtures the development of DMW,” he added.
The joint circular, signed by Laguesma and Ople, demonstrates the government’s commitment to encouraging collaboration among state institutions in order to ensure a better future for Filipino workers. (DOLE)