SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga – The Department of Labor and Employment here said the worldwide economic crisis has already displaced some 5,000 workers in Central Luzon since November, but the local call center industry remains in need of thousands more of agents.
“The government is ready with financial assistance for them as well as others in the labor sector affected by the current crisis,” DOLE regional director Nathaniel Lacambra told The Star.
Lacambra said that some 5,000 workers in the region were either laid off or whose employment had been subject to “rescheduling” that led to lesser pay.
“We have to tell the truth about this situation, while putting emphasis on the fact that the government is also trying its best to cushion the impact of the global crisis,” he said.
Lacambra said he expected bigger allocations this year for livelihood assistance for affected workers, noting that last year, Central Luzon got P30 million for its regular share, such assistance coursed through the DOLE, plus another P29 million for the department’s “Tupad” and “Isla” programs.
The latter two programs, he said, were successfully piloted last year in Central Luzon. “The President now wants them done in 77 provinces nationwide,” he said.
He said the “Tupad” program grants families of displaced workers enough cash to provide them their basic needs until such time their bread winners get another employment, while the “Isla” program gives financial help to fisherfolk.–Ding Cervantes, Philippine Star