Labor mulls over cash aid for 3M displaced workers


THE Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) is eyeing to provide cash aid next year to 3 million displaced workers.

It issued the statement amid the clamor from labor groups for another round of financial assistance for employees who were retrenched after lockdown measures against the coronavirus disease of 2019 (Covid-19) nearly tanked the economy.

In an online forum on Sunday, Labor and Employment Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III said they are considering allocating more funds for the “Covid-19 Adjustment Measures” (CAM) program.

Bello said the number of beneficiaries would be included as recipients in the 2022 General Appropriations Act.

The CAM program is a one-time P5,000 financial assistance provided by the DOLE to formal sector workers, who were displaced during the pandemic.

Assistant Labor Secretary Dominique R. Tutay said the said proposal is yet to be included in the 2022 national expenditure program (NEP) of the DOLE.

“The changes may be discussed during the [budget] deliberations in Congress,” Tutay told the BusinessMirror.

Currently, she said they only request additional funding for their Government Internship Program (GIP), which aims to provide short-term employment to qualified youth in government offices.

Last week, DOLE requested an additional P2-billion funding from the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) to help it re-implement the CAM program in Metro Manila and other areas, which were placed under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).

Bello said they already exhausted the allocated funds for the CAM program under the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act (Bayanihan 1) and Bayanihan to Recover as One Act (Bayanihan 2).

As of May, the Labor Department was able to remit P1.7 billion in CAM program benefits to 354,748 workers.

The DBM, however, said the request is unlikely to be granted since DOLE still has existing funding in its “Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers,” or  “Tupad” program, which it said could be tapped to provide emergency employment to displaced workers.

Read full article on BusinessMirror

Leave a Reply