“The growing number of victims of human trafficking and contract substitution throughout the world pose a major challenge to the next administration. Increasing poverty has driven many Filipinos to clutch at empty promises of bogus recruiters and human traffickers,” said Susan Ople, president of the Blas F. Ople Policy Center.
Ople, who recently received the Harvard Kennedy School Alumni Achievement Award for advocacy, noted that the overwhelming support bestowed by overseas Filipino voters to president-elect Benigno Aquino Jr. comes with high hopes and expectations that the labor sector would receive the priority it deserves.
“The increasing trend towards contractual work has become a major push factor for migration as more Filipinos consider migration as the first option for economic advancement,” Ople said.
According to the Ople Center , the incoming administration should immediate embark on institutional and legislative reforms that would
1. Grant additional seats in the Board of Trustees to strengthen OFW representation in the Overseas Workers’ Welfare Administration while providing additional benefits to its members;
2. Allocate budgets for the immediate deployment of legal and social welfare attaches particularly to countries with a high incidence of human trafficking and other welfare cases, such as in destination points in the Middle East. Philippine Embassies and Consulates must be prepared to file cases against abusive foreign employers and agents, especially in cases involving contract substitution, rape and maltreatment of workers, rather than just repatriate the workers involved. FULL STORY
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