Gov’t setting up OFW access centers in malls
The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) will set up access centers for Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) in malls nationwide to better educate OFWs on the realities of overseas employment as well as to curb illegal recruitment.
The OFW Access Centers may be used by OFWs to verify licensed agencies and job orders, attend pre-employment orientation and anti-illegal recruitment seminars, and secure information and education materials, according to POEA Administrator Jennifer J. Manalili.
Manalili has commended the private sector for their commitment to the country’s workers. “The partnership with the private sector is another strategy in the government’s implementation of a massive and extensive information campaign on the realities of overseas employment, including illegal recruitment.’’
The center is also eyed as a facility for the eventual processing of documents of returning workers.
The setting up of the centers is provided under the memorandum of understanding signed by the POEA and SM Retail, Inc. and SM Prime Holdings, Inc.—owner of the largest mall chain in the Philippines—last Monday.
Teresita Sy-Coson signed the agreement in her capacity as president of SM Retail, Inc. and Hans T. Sy as president of SM Prime Holdings, Inc., while Labor and Employment Secretary Marianito D. Roque signed in his capacity as chairman of the POEA Governing Board.
Roque said the MOU provided that SM Prime Holdings Inc. and SM Retail Inc., which operates 34 malls nationwide, will provide venues and attend to the concerns of job applicants, OFWs, and their families.
The agreement states that SM Retail Inc., which operates some 34 SM malls nationwide, is required to set up an OFW Access Center in its malls.
“These centers are expected to help OFWs verify licensed agencies and job orders, attend pre-employment orientation and anti-illegal recruitment seminars, and secure information and education materials,’’ said Roque. (with a report by Shianee Mamanglu)