By Argyll Cyrus Geducos
A total of 139,003 regular and non-regular formal workers affected by the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) measures have already received financial assistance from the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), the Inter-agency Task Force (IATF) for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases announced Wednesday.
In a virtual press briefing on Wednesday, Cabinet Secretary and IATF spokesman Karlo Nograles said each of the workers received a P5,000 cash aid from DOLE’s COVID-19 Adjustment Measures Program (CAMP).
To encourage employers to submit their reports and to help other formal workers, Nograles said the DOLE will not publicize these reports nor use these against the employers.
The DOLE was also no longer strictly requiring the submission of the company payroll in the establishment report.
“Any proof of payment of salaries and wages will be sufficient compliance with the requirement,” Nograles said.
In addition, Nograles said DOLE field offices will continue processing establishment reports even during the Holy Week to speed up the processing of assistance.
The government has also entered into an agreement with Land Bank for the expeditious release and remittance of funds through their branches and automated teller machines (ATMs) nationwide.
Nograles earlier appealed to workers in the formal sector not to include themselves in the social amelioration program of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) intended for workers from the informal sector.
“Nasa formal ka tapos alam mong makukuha ka na rin mula sa DOLE, tapos sasabihin mo doon sa misis mo, ‘Ikaw informal sector ka, humingi ka roon kay kapitan o kay mayor.’ Walang ganyanan (You belong to the formal sector and you know you will get something from DOLE, do not ask your wife who belongs to the informal sector to ask for assistance from the local government anymore. We will not allow that.),” he said.
“Nasa krisis tayo… Kung makikiagaw ka pa sa informal sector, na-deprive mo yung ibang tao. So ganoon na lang ang pakiusap natin (We are in a crisis. If you will still compete for assistance with the informal sector, then you will be depriving them of assistance. So that’s our appeal),” he added.