MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said Wednesday it has recorded more than 630,000 workers displaced by the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) either by the temporary closure of establishments or because of flexible work arrangements as of March 31.
Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said that of this number, 169,232 belong to the informal sector.
Bello said DOLE has so far distributed P160 million in cash aid and is accelerating the release of assistance to workers affected by the quarantine, which started on March 17 and is set to end at midnight on April 13.
“To emphasize, the cash aid available is different from the allocation of between P5,000 to P8,000 in subsidy that the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and other agencies are providing under the Bayanihan to Heal As One law,” he said in a statement.
The Labor Secretary assured that the department is “bent on providing assistance to as many of our workers in the formal economy sector inasmuch as we give to informal sector workers.”
“But it has come to our attention that there are not a few establishments that refuse to submit their report along with the payroll to the detriment of their workers. I, therefore, appeal again to companies that, for the sake of your employees and workers, submit your reports so that we may be able to extend them their most needed assistance under the COVID 19 Adjustment Measures Program (CAMP),” said Bello.
He noted that while the new Bayanihan law provides cash and non-cash Emergency Subsidy Program (ESP) for two months based on the prevailing regional wage rates, DOLE’s CAMP is a one-time assistance during the quarantine.