Senator Sonny Angara has called for the passage of a bill that seeks to waive government fees and charges on the issuance of documents required in the application for employment of first time jobseekers.

"It is alarming that the Philippines has one of the highest unemployment rates in the region. The government should do what it can to help jobseekers, especially our new graduates, find employment. Huwag na natin silang pahirapan pa sa mga gastusin sa paghahanap ng trabaho," said Angara, principal author of Senate Bill 1629 and the vice chair of the Senate committee on labor and employment.

Under the bill, no fees shall be collected for the following documents: police clearance certificate, NBI clearance, barangay clearance, medical certificate from public hospitals, birth and marriage certificate, tax identification number, unified multi-purpose ID card, and other documentary requirements issued by the government that may be required by employers for first time jobseekers.

Those who can avail of this incentive are new graduates who finished a bachelor's degree, completed the K-12 program or a technical-vocational course from all schools, colleges and universities, and technical-vocational institutions.

An early school leaver or a student taking a leave of absence or any person working part-time while enrolled are also qualified to avail the benefits.

SB 1629 further mandates the Public Employment Service Office (PESO) to assist first time jobseekers in securing all required documents for their job application, certification or clearance, and in registering or enrolling them with relevant government agencies such as the BIR, SSS, Pag-Ibig, PhilHealth, among others.

"We want to solve the unemployment problem in the country that's why we are pushing for reforms that will help more Filipinos get a job. Tulungan natin ang bawat Pilipino na magkaroon disenteng trabaho at sapat na kita para sa mas maginhawang buhay," said Angara, who is also the author and sponsor of laws strengthening PESO and raising the take-home pay of workers.

Source: Senate of the Philippines

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