By Leslie Ann Aquino
The Trade Union Congress of the Philippines wants the government to maintain the total ban on the deployment of Household Service Workers (HSWs) to Kuwait.
In a statement, TUCP President Raymond Mendoza said the deployment ban on HSWs should be maintained until justice has been given to Jeanelyn Villavende, the overseas Filipino worker killed in Kuwait recently.
“The death of Jeanelyn Villavende at the hands of her employers cries for justice, as does every instance of mistreatment and abuse from their employers that our OFWs face in foreign lands. The hearing for her case is ongoing in Kuwait, and until justice is served there is no clear reason why the government should lift the deployment ban,” he said.
“Kuwait will just laugh at us if we start redeployment based on assurances on paper from Kuwait,” added Mendoza.
He said clear monitoring mechanisms must also be put into place, so that the safety and welfare of our workers is guaranteed.
“The creation of a special police unit in Kuwait for OFW concerns should be in place, as well as a hotline that our workers can easily call should they be in a precarious situation and need immediate assistance before the Philippine government reconsiders lifting the ban on the deployment of HSWs,” Mendoza said.
Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III on Thursday announced the partial lifting of the deployment ban of OFWs to Kuwait as HSWs will continue to be covered by the ban.
The labor chief cited the recent signing of the harmonized standardized employment contract for household service workers as reason for this.