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Hontiveros to DOLE: Protect OFWs, not threaten them with deportation during coronavirus crisis

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It’s time to protect, not harass, Filipino workers abroad amid the global outbreak of the new coronavirus disease.

Senator Risa Hontiveros issued this reminder to the country’s labor officials following the controversial move to seek the deportation of Filipino caregiver in Taiwan over negative comments about President Duterte.

Taiwan has reportedly rejected the request of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) to send back the OFW critical of Duterte, citing freedom of speech.

Hontiveros said the labor department should focus on protecting the rights and welfare of overseas Filipino workers as many countries remained on lockdown due to the pandemic.

“Dapat unahin natin ang kapakanan ng mga Pilipinong OFW na tapat na nagtratrabaho sa ibang bansa, imbes na takutin silang ipadeport sa gitna ng krisis,” she wrote on Facebook.

She said Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) should take care of the workers and protect from them from any potential abuse in the workplace.

“Sana mas bigyang-pansin ng POLO ang pag-aabuso sa mga kababayan rating OFW. Mas kailangan solusyonan ng POLO ang kapakanan ng mga OFWs sa gitna ng COVID 19 at panggigipit sa trabaho,” she said.

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