Issue of December 3, 2017

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Kagawaran ng Paggawa at Empleyo celebrates 84 years of public service

The Department of Labor and Employment or Kagawaran ng Paggawa at Empleyo is a national agency mandated to formulate and implement policies and programs, and it serves as the policy-advisory arm of the executive branch in the field of labor and employment. It is tasked with the enforcement of the provisions of the Labor Code of the Philippines.

It started as a small bureau in 1908 and became a department on Dec. 8, 1933 with the passage of Act 4121 by the Philippine Legislature. The primary mission of the DOLE is to promote gainful employment opportunities, develop human resources, protect workers and promote their welfare, and maintain industrial peace. This year, DOLE will celebrate its 84th founding anniversary.

The DOLE serves more than 42.7 million workers comprising the country’s labor force and the 3.86 million temporary migrants working in about 214 destinations worldwide, and other clients like trade unions, workers’ organizations and employers and/or employers groups like the Employers’ Confederation of the Philippines, Chambers of Commerce and Industries, the Trade Union Congress of the Philippines, Federation of Free Workers to name a few.

The DOLE coordinates with 123 Tripartite Industrial Peace Councils composed of 13 regional, 44 provincial and 66 city and municipal and also 128 Industry Tripartite Councils composing 46 regional, 48 provincial and 34 city and municipal serving as mechanisms for social dialogue in addressing labor and employment issues.

The DOLE also maintains linkages with non-government organizations, government agencies, the academe and partner international organizations like the International Labor Organization, International Organization for Migration, International Maritime Organization, United Nations Development Programme, United Nations Children’s Fund and United Nations Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking.

The DOLE also sustains and even further heightens its protection mechanisms and interventions for overseas Filipino workers, especially now that there is a brewing tension in the Middle East, specifically between Saudi Arabia and Iran.

Safeguarding of OFWs is DOLE’s constant concern and it keeps itself informed of their conditions to promptly address their interest and welfare, 24/7, through the Philippine Overseas Labor Offices.

The organization of the DOLE, consists of the department proper composed of the Office of Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III, there are five undersecretaries namely Dominador R. Say, Employment and Policy Support, Joel B. Maglunsod, Labor Relations and Special Concerns; Ciriaco A. Lagunzad III, Workers Welfare Protection, Human Resource and Financial Services; Bernard P. Olalia; Human Capital Development and Regional Operations and Claro A. Arellano; Legal, Legislative and International Affairs. The assistant secretaries are Alex Avila, Maria Gloria Tango, Joji Aragon, Amuerfina Reyes, Federico Abuan and Mariano Alquiza.

There are seven department services responsible for providing advice and support services for efficient, effective and economical operations namely the Administrative Service, Financial and Management Service, the Human Resource and Development Service, the Internal Audit Service, the Legal Service, the Planning Service and the Information and Publication Service or Labor Communications Office.

Under the Office of the Secretary, there are seven bureaus namely Bureau of Employment, Bureau of Labor Relations, Bureau of Workers with Special Concerns, Bureau of Working Conditions, International Labor Affairs Bureau, the Regional Offices and the Philippine Overseas Labor Offices. These offices perform primarily policy and program development and advisory functions in the administration and enforcement of laws along their respective areas of specialization.

Attached to the DOLE for policy and program coordination and administrative supervision are the Employees Compensation Commission, Institute for Labor Studies, Maritime Training Council, National Conciliation and Mediation Board, National Maritime Polytechnic, Occupational Safety and Health Center, Overseas Workers Welfare Administration, Philippine Overseas Employment Administration, National Labor Relations Commission, National Wages and Productivity Commission, National Reintegration Center for OFWs and the Professional Regulations Commission.

The DOLE-Cordillera is currently headed by OIC Regional Director Exequiel Ronie Guzman. The regional office is composed of the Office of the Regional Director; Office of the Assistant Regional Director (Elpidio Atal, Jr.), Office of Mediator Arbiter (Atty. Anthony Wooden, Jr.), Technical Support and Services Division (Dr. Emerito Narag, TSSD chief), Internal Management and Services Division (Venus Guinjicna) and the provincial field offices. Abra field office (George Lubin, Jr.), Apayao field office (Darwin Hombrebueno), Baguio-Benguet field office (Apollo Luspian), Ifugao field office (Avelina Manganip), Kalinga field office (Dr. Alexander Gumabol) and Mountain Province field office (Samuel Lasdacan).

You may call 24/7 “1349” the DOLE national hotline from your fixed-line phones. Our officers can provide assistance over the telephone from Mondays thru Fridays from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. for your queries and complaints on labor and employment. Our office numbers are 443-5339, 424-0824/442-2447 and 443-5338. Email your concerns and complaints at (regional office), (Abra), (BBFO), (Ifugao), (Kalinga), Mt. Province and (Apayao).

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