MANILA – The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) has approved the PHP5-billion budget to help the displaced workers affected by coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic in the country, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said on Tuesday.
In a virtual presser aired on state-run PTV-4, Nograles said the IATF-EID approved on Monday night the Department of Labor and Employment’s (DOLE) proposed social amelioration programs for the formal workers’ sector.
“For this purpose, the IATF supports the approval and immediate release of the requested budget by the Department of Labor and Employment amounting to PHP5 billion, in order to defray the costs of the following social amelioration programs,” Nograles, spokesperson of IATF-EID, said.
Nograles said the money would be released to fund DOLE’s Covid-19 Adjustment Measures Program (CAMP) for affected overseas Filipino workers and (OFWs) and local workers; Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa ating Displaced or Disadvantaged Workers (TUPAD) Sanitation Project; and the Abot Kamay ang Pagtulong (AKAP) for OFWs program.
He said DOLE’s social amelioration programs for displaced formal workers are different from the assistance offered by other government agencies.
“The beneficiaries of the (the DOLE’s social amelioration programs) shall be separate and distinct from those already covered by social amelioration programs by other agencies of the national government,” Nograles said.
According to DOLE’s field monitoring reports, over 600,000 workers have been displaced due to the threat posed by Covid-19.
Nearly 200,000 displaced workers have already received cash assistance from DOLE.
About PHP622 million in assistance funds have already been released to beneficiaries of CAMP and TUPAD Sanitation Project.
DOLE earlier stressed the need to release another PHP5 billion to help more workers affected by the anti-Covid-19 measures.
Around 102,895 formal workers had received the one-time PHP5,000 cash assistance under CAMP, while close to 80,000 workers benefitted from TUPAD Sanitation Project, as of April 4. (PNA)