The Department of Social Welfare and Development assisted 164 distressed overseas Filipino workers and victims of trafficking.
Through its International Social Services Office and the Recovery and Reintegration Program for Trafficked Persons, the DSWD provided services and financial assistance amounting to P201,600.
“Our designated social workers are in close coordination with the local government units and partner agencies such as the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration for us to provide assistance to this sector. We are offering a wide menu of services to support their recovery,” DSWD-Cordillera Director Arnel B. Garcia said.
Aside from financial assistance for medical, burial, transportation, legal, or educational needs of the clients or their family, the DSWD also provides counselling and home visits, livelihood assistance, airport or rescue assistance, temporary shelter, and referral to other institutions and agencies.
Individuals belonging to at least one of the following circumstances are considered as distressed OFWs or trafficked person:
- Trafficking in person for forced labor or slavery or sexual exploitation or marriage (broker, mail order bride) or organ selling or pornography or cyber sex or child trafficking;
- Victim-survivor of illegal recruitment or abuse/maltreatment or physical/ emotional/ verbal psychological abuse or sexual abuse such as rape, acts of lasciviousness, sexual harassment, pornography, incest, sexual exploitation;
- Victim-survivor of unfair labor practice/mistreatment/breach contract unpaid and low salary, no food, over worked, no day-off;
- Victims survivor of natural or human induced disaster;
- Domestic/family problems;
- Medical/health problems;
- Accused/suspected/with criminal charges/sentenced; and
- Documentary related problems (Unregistered born abroad or expired/lost passport/ or overstaying or illegal entry/backdoor or in-appropriate visa or fake documents/confiscated documents.
Individuals experiencing or know any of the aforementioned circumstance abroad may seek assistance from the nearest Philippine Embassy or Consulate.
For incidents within the Philippines, concerned individuals may report to their respective Local Government Units through their barangay officials or Local Social Welfare and Development Office, the Philippine National Police, DSWD, or the National Bureau of Investigation. – Nerizza Faye G. Villanueva Trinidad