DOLE extends assistance to 42,077 Caraga workers displaced by ‘Odette’ and pandemic

Published May 19, 2022, 12:25 PM

by Mike Crismundo

BUTUAN CITY – At least 42,077 workers displaced by super typhoon ‘Odette’ and the pandemic were already given emergency employment assistance in Northeastern Mindanao (The Caraga Region) by the government, a report said on Thursday (May 19).

A total of 22,070 workers in Surigao del Norte and Siargao Island and another 1,189 workers in the Province of Dinagat Islands were given financial assistance amounting to close to P138 million under Department of Labor and Employment-Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers or TUPAD.

“This humanitarian effort is a continuing program of the government,” DOLE-13 Regional Director Atty. Joffrey M. Suyao told The Manila Bulletin on Thursday.

DOLE 13 Administrative Assistant 1 and Regional Labor Information Officer Ms. Anya Pernelle B. Sollano said a total of P133,805,774 was already rolled out by the DOLE Surigao del Norte field office to Congressional Districts 1 and 2 (Siargao and Mainland Surigao del Norte) as salaries for province’s displaced workers caused by the recent Super Typhoon Odette.

The rollout would benefit 22,070 workers under the TUPAD for the 1st quarter of 2022. Congressional District 1 received P71,363,310 fund allocation which will go to 11,786 beneficiaries while Congressional District 2 was granted P54,442,464 for 8,108 beneficiaries, and the Provincial Office (PO) with P8,000,000 fund allocation for 2,176 beneficiaries.

“Each worker will receive a salary of P4,800 for 15 days of work and P3,200 for 10 days of work,” the DOLE 13 regional information officer said.

The province of Surigao del Norte was greatly affected by Typhoon Odette late last year. The implementation of TUPAD is a crucial means of financial assistance to the Surigaonons who lost their houses and properties and were physically and emotionally affected by the disaster.

“DOLE Caraga remains committed to continuously provide aid to support these workers in the coming months,” added DOLE 13.

TUPAD is an institutionalized, community-based amelioration program aimed at helping displaced, underemployed, and seasonal workers during calamities, both natural and man-made.

Meanwhile, a total of P 4,316,620.00 was also awarded to 1,189 beneficiaries of TUPAD in PDI.

In addition to emergency employment, the DOLE 13 also turned over individual livelihoods to three beneficiaries in that same province, Ms. Sollano said.

On the other hand, the DOLE released salaries amounting to P43,523,200 to 13,601 TUPAD beneficiaries for their 10 days of work. The salary release started from April 8 to May 7, 2022, in various municipalities of Surigao del Sur.

The DOLE-Agusan del Norte Field Office (DOLE ADNFO) conducted a back-to-back TUPAD recently, releasing P13,752,000 as wages of the 2,232 TUPAD beneficiaries from the nine barangays of Tubay, Agusan del Norte and 633 TUPAD beneficiaries from the twenty-five barangays in Butuan City.

As the country is slowly recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic, the DOLE -Agusan del Sur Field Office (DOLE ADSFO) also did not cease from providing assistance to displaced and affected workers of Agusan del Sur.

Initially, 2,352 workers received emergency employment assistance through the DOLE-Agusan del Sur Field Office TUPAD implementation. This translates to a total of ₱11,129,600.00 worth of salaries. On top of this, a package of assistance is awarded to beneficiaries which include personal protective equipment and accident insurance coverage for one year.

This year, emergency work of TUPAD beneficiaries started as early as March and since April 28, DOLE ADSFO has released salaries to 778 TUPAD beneficiaries from the municipalities of San Francisco, Esperanza, San Luis, Bunawan, Trento and Bayugan City. The department continues to hold a series of onsite salary payments to address the transportation needs of beneficiaries from far-flung areas, Ms. Sollano said.

Amidst the challenges brought by the Covid19, DOLE ADSFO also stood its ground for its clientele by immediately addressing their needs to the best of the organization’s ability and with its frontliners working tirelessly to fulfill the mandate given by the government and to serve the people of Agusan del Sur., DOLE 13 Regional Director Joffrey M. Suyao said.

“As part of our unceasing commitment in ensuring the welfare of our Filipino workers, we at DOLE Caraga are continuously coordinating with our LGUs and partner agencies on providing assistance to Caraganons, especially those displaced due to the Covid19 and the recent super typhoon Odette,” the region’s top DOLE 13 official pointed out.

“We hope that through the implementation of TUPAD and other programs of the DOLE, we are able to deliver essential government services to alleviate the lives of our beneficiaries,” added Regional Director Suyao.