Good news for the country’s micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs), most of which continue to grapple with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
As a way to help MSMEs get back on their feet, Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE) Secretary Silvestre Bello III is offering free occupational health and safety training to safety officers coming from these business establishments.
This means that MSMEs will save P5,500 per trainee. The fee was set by the Occupational Safety and Health Center.
Bello emphasized the need to ensure the health and safety of the workers and employees to boost productivity as the economy reopens gradually.
“We are waiving the training fees being charged to micro and small businesses, and those companies in distress. The workers in those enterprises have to be assured of their safety and health while at the workplace. This is a big factor to their productivity,” said the DoLE chief.
“This is also a form of assistance to our MSMEs being hardest hit by the restrictions due to the pandemic,” he added.
The Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Law or Republic Act (RA) 11058 makes it mandatory to designate and train safety officers in all business establishments, the number of which corresponds the number of employees in enterprises.
The law states that it is the duty of employers, contractors, and subcontractors to inform their workers about the hazards and risks involved in the occupation entered in and provide appropriate job instruction and orientation regarding OSH.
It says all workers are required to attend an eight-hour OSH seminar, which should include a joint employer-employee orientation on safety and health standards.