Some 11,500 employees from the private sector have been displaced due to the Alert Level 3 Covid-19 classification in Metro Manila and other areas of the country, Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Secretary Silvestre Bello III said on Tuesday.
He said the number is way below the Department of Trade and Industry’s estimate that the Alert Level 3 status will displace 100,000 to 200,000 workers.
“Fortunately, as of, I think that was yesterday or Sunday, the displaced workers because of Alert Level 3 are only more than 11,500 workers, they lost their jobs because their company, either retrenched or closed the operation,” Bello said in a virtual Palace press briefing.
Bello said there are also workers who did not lose their jobs but their working hours or days have been reduced “because their employers are observing flexible working arrangement.”
“So, although their status of employment is there, their income is lesser because of the lesser working hours,” he added.
He said about 20,000 workers have been affected due to the flexible working arrangement.
“But there is also some bad news. There are almost, I think 600 plus (establishments) that have stopped or closed operations,” he said.
Bello said the DOLE will be accepting affected workers under its Covid-19 Adjustment Measures Program (CAMP).
“With Alert Level 3 extending its period and coverage, the DOLE set aside PHP1 billion Covid-19 Adjustment Measures Program (CAMP) to provide a one-time P5,000.00 financial assistance for workers in the formal sector. We will start accepting applications anytime soon once the guidelines are published,” he said during the Task Force Group of Economic Recovery-National Employment Recovery Strategy virtual press conference on Tuesday.
He said they also implemented P120 million emergency employment or TUPAD (Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced) with some 25,000 beneficiaries receiving their wages already.
For tourism workers, the DOLE also allocated P50 million for emergency employment also under TUPAD in typhoon-stricken areas, and another P50 million for CAMP in NCR.