DOLE ready to help ECQ-affected workers

The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) is ready to provide financial assistance to formal and informal sector workers to be affected by the one-week enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in Metro Manila and four other neighboring provinces.

DOLE Secretary Silvestre Bello III said the department has an allocation of some PHP10 billion under the 2021 national budget.

“We have received under our GAA (General Appropriation Act) for 2021. Under CAMP, some PHP4 million. For TUPAD, we have PHP6 billion,” he said in a virtual forum on Monday.

He said under Covid-19 Adjustment Measures Program (CAMP), the affected workers will be provided with one-time cash assistance worth PHP5,000 by the employers.

On the other hand, Bello said informal sector workers will be provided an emergency employment as contract tracers to be deployed by the local government units under Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers (TUPAD).

He said the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) is assigned to train the workers as contact tracers.

“It will be the DILG who will train the contact tracers. After training, they will join the contact tracing activities. So, we will leave it to the better judgement of the DILG in selecting workers that will be hired as their contact tracers,” Bello said.

Bello said the DOLE has not yet received complaints from workers affected by the ECQ implementation.

The government has put Metro Manila and the provinces of Bulacan, Rizal, Laguna and Cavite under ECQ from March 29 to April 4 amid the rising Covid-19 cases.

On Monday, the Department of Health (DOH) logged 10,016 new Covid-19 infections, the highest single-day number of cases that brought the country’s total case tally to 731,894, including 603,213 listed as recovered cases.

The DOH also reported 16 new deaths for a total of 13,186.

Source: Philippines News Agency

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