Senate Bill No. 648: Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos Assistance Act

From the malls of Hong Kong to the souqs of the Middle East and even on massive vessels navigating through borderless seas, you’ll find talented Filipinos diligently working to build a brighter future for their family.

They aren’t only keeping their loved ones above water financially; they are also keeping the Philippine economy afloat with remittances reaching $16.21 billion or P764 billion from January to August 2015.

Even with their contribution, Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) remain vulnerable to poor working conditions and abusive employers.

In addition, their employment abroad is no guarantee of financial success.

In a survey conducted by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas last September 2015, only 38.2% of the 563 household-respondents said that a portion of the money from OFWs are set aside for savings.

There are still too many OFWs that come home without a plan for retirement. Keeping in mind our duty to empower and uplift every Filipino, the OFW Protection Act bolsters our support for the OFW community and the families they leave back home.

This measure ensures our OFWs safety by strictly monitoring and assessing accredited partner agencies and mandating the Public Attorney’s Office to establish a help­ desk in every international port of exit in the Philippines to offer legal service, assistance and advice to departing migrant workers.

Acknowledging the immense power in access to credible information, this measure orders effective and efficient information dissemination on labor, employment, and migration data through various mediums, including social media.

Lastly, to truly achieve prosperity for every Filipino family, this measure integrates programs on livelihood, entrepreneurship, savings, investments and financial literacy to the existing efforts of embassies.

This is our opportunity show our gratitude and appreciation to our overseas Filipinos while fulfilling our duty as public servants.


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