The Filipino Nurses United (FNU) has called on the government to lift the deployment ban on healthcare workers, saying that it should respect their right “to seek better work opportunities” overseas.
“The FNU finds it outrageous that the government while failing or unwilling to provide just wages and decent incentives to nurses at this time of a health and economic crisis, would even deprive them of their right to seek better opportunities overseas,” the group said in a statement on Tuesday, June 15.
“The FNU calls on the government to immediately lift the deployment ban and respect the right of nurses and other health workers to seek better work opportunities abroad,” it added.
It said that the deployment ban is an “unjust and an irrational policy that will not address the current problem of acute nurse understaffing especially in this time of pandemic.”
“Many of these nurses have in fact already served in the country’s health system under the “no work, no pay” employment scheme. These nurses should not be barred from their aspirations for a better life that our government cannot provide,” the FNU said.
“The deployment ban, even though the government says is only a stop-gap and temporary measure, is seen to create more social and economic problems for nurses and their families, especially for those who have processed their papers for work overseas and have already incurred huge expenses,” it added.
The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) on June 1 reimposed the deployment ban after the 5,000-annual cap for nurses has already been reached.