overseas workers - updates

Rappler's latest stories on overseas workers


Bello rejects calls to use OFWs' OWWA contributions for aid

Jun 30, 2020 - 3:30 PM

'Dapat gobyerno ang magbigay ng pera,' says Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III, as he reiterates the need for a supplemental budget to assist overseas Filipino workers

OWWA TRUST FUND. Around 500 OFW repatriates mostly from Middle East were given COVID-19 clearances to go home to their respective provinces by land transport on June 18, 2020. Photo by KD Madrilejos/Rappler

If pandemic persists, OWWA funds to be depleted end of 2021

Jun 24, 2020 - 2:15 PM

The costs for hotel, food, and transportation for overseas Filipino workers are not sustainable, says OWWA chief Hans Cacdac

DEPLETING FUNDS. Repatriated Overseas Filipino Workers and seafarers queue to board buses at Paranaque Integrated Exchange Terminal after their prolonged mandatory quarantine on May 28, 2020. Photo by Inoue Jaena/Rappler

House panel eyes additional P5-billion aid for OFWs

May 22, 2020 - 6:01 PM

Labor officials estimate that some 500,000 overseas Filipino workers may be out of work by the end of August

LIVES INTERRUPTED. A quarantine team from DOH assist repatriated OFWs from different countries into a hotel-turned isolation facility in Manila on April 2, 2020. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

163 Filipinos repatriated from Macau arrive in Manila

Mar 07, 2020 - 10:03 AM

(UPDATED) The Filipino repatriates, who are considered persons-under-monitoring, will go on home quarantine

HOME. Some of the Filipino repatriates from Macau arrive at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport on March 7, 2020. Screenshot from RTVM

DFA to repatriate 148 Filipinos from Macau amid coronavirus outbreak

Mar 03, 2020 - 5:21 PM

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration also says it will repatriate 48 active members from the area

MACAU. A man wears a facemask as he walks along the waterfront in the background of city's skyline in Macau on January 30, 2020. Photo by Philip Fong/AFP

Gov’t to give cash aid to OFWs affected by China travel ban

Feb 03, 2020 - 6:04 PM

The government will give P10,000 to each overseas Filipino worker stranded in the country due to the temporary travel ban on mainland China, Hong Kong, and Macau

FLIGHT BAN. Passengers not affected by the flight ban continue to arrive at the NAIA Terminal 1 in Pasay City on February 3, 2020. Photo by Jire Carreon/Rappler

Robredo fact-checks Uson: Why let a fake news peddler get taxpayers' money?

Jan 16, 2020 - 1:55 PM

Known online propagandist and OWWA official Mocha Uson falsely claims the food packs donated by the Vice President's office to the Taal victims contained only 5 pieces of pan de sal and a bottle of water

NOT FAKE NEWS. Vice President Leni Robredo gives a relief pack to a Taal Volcano evacuee in the town of San Jose, Batangas on January 14, 2020. Photo by Jay Ganzon/OVP

[EXPLAINER] Was Mocha Uson a candidate covered by the appointment ban?

Oct 01, 2019 - 9:30 PM

Until all election rules are harmonized, we have to contend with loophole-ridden laws and regulations that the likes of Mocha Uson and friends can easily take advantage of

‘This gov’t is good at recycling garbage’: Netizens slam Mocha Uson's OWWA appointment

Sep 30, 2019 - 3:55 PM

What do you think of the Duterte administration's move to bring Mocha Uson back to government?

Duterte gives Mocha Uson a new government post

Sep 30, 2019 - 1:24 PM

(UPDATED) The pro-Duterte blogger is appointed a deputy executive director at the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration

Former PCOO Assistant Secretary Mocha Uson files nomination under Kasosyo party list on October 15, 2018. Photo by Jire Carreon/Rappler

Malacañang receives resignation of Arnell Ignacio from OWWA post

Feb 27, 2019 - 6:36 PM

'He has intimated his desire to pursue other endeavors. We wish him luck to a new path he will traverse,' says Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo

RESIGNATION. Overseas Workers Welfare Administration Deputy Administrator Arnell Ignacio announces his resignation from the government agency in a press conference in Quezon City on February 27, 2019. Photo by Darren Langit/Rappler

OWWA brings home 109 distressed OFWs from Saudi Arabia

Dec 08, 2018 - 2:12 PM

'Many of the workers decided to come home due to contract violations by their Saudi employers,' says the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration

OWWA Administrator Hans Leo Cacdac (2nd, R) welcomes OFWs repatriated from Dammam, Saudi Arabia, at the Manila international airport on December 8, 2018. Screenshot from OWWA video

OWWA launches OFW e-card for easier access to gov't benefits

Nov 06, 2018 - 2:55 PM

(UPDATED) The e-card reduces the number of documents needed when applying for programs and services offered by the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration

E-CARD. Danilo Castroverde is among the first OFWs who claimed an OWWA OFW e-card during the launch on November 6, 2018. Photo by Aika Rey/Rappler

OFWs to receive digital literacy, business training from Facebook

Jun 07, 2018 - 4:36 PM

'This can be used to avoid scams – knowing what types of information can be sourced from legitimate source. That's why the entry point of safety,' says OWWA chief Hans Cacdac

TRAININGS. Overseas Welfare Workers' Administration and social media giant Facebook partners on Migrant Workers' Day. Photo by Aika Rey/Rappler

‘That is a crime’: OWWA’s Arnell Ignacio hits OFW rescue ops in Kuwait

Apr 23, 2018 - 7:45 PM

Overseas Workers Welfare Administration Deputy Administrator Arnell Ignacio says Philippine embassy personnel should have coordinated with Kuwaiti police

'IT'S A CRIME'. OWWA Deputy Administrator Arnell Ignacio said that the rescue of OFWs in Kuwait by the DFA violated Kuwaiti laws and should not have been on social media. File photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

'A national shame': The death and homecoming of Joanna Demafelis

Mar 04, 2018 - 12:07 AM

In May 2014, Joanna Demafelis left for Kuwait to help secure a better future for her family. She comes home in a box nearly 4 years later.

Philippine officials meet OFWs in Kuwait amid labor row

Feb 25, 2018 - 8:00 PM

The Department of Labor and Employment says the deployment ban will not be lifted until safety guarantees are secured

Ciriaco A. Lagunzad III (C), Undersecretary for Workers Protection, Human Resource, and Internal Auditing Services Cluster in the Filipino Department of Labour, speaks during a meeting with the Filipino community at his country's embassy in Kuwait City on February 24, 2018. The employers of the murdered 29-year-old Filipina maid Joanna Demafelis, whose body was found dead in a freezer in Kuwait, were both arrested in the Syrian capital Damascus, a Lebanese judicial official said on February 24. The murder had sparked outrage in the Philippines and prompted President Rodrigo Duterte to impose a departure ban for Filipinos planning to work in Kuwait. / AFP PHOTO / YASSER AL-ZAYYAT

Family of OFW earthquake victim to receive around P1.94 million in aid – Bello

Feb 09, 2018 - 8:13 PM

Aside from aid from the Overseas Workers Welfare Association, Melody Albano Castro's family will receive additional money from worker's insurance and Hualien City government aid

TAIWAN. A rescue worker clears debris to make way for the recovery of the dead bodies of a Hong Kong Canadian couple from the Yun Tsui building, in the Taiwanese city of Hualien on February 9, 2018. Photo by Anthony Wallace/AFP

What's contingency plan if PH stops deploying OFWs to Kuwait? – Villanueva

Jan 27, 2018 - 12:45 PM

But International watchdog Human Rights Watch says that instead of a ban, the Philippines should demand 'stronger protections' for overseas Filipino workers

WAITING. Following the deaths of 7 OFWs in Kuwait, the Department of Labor and Employment stopped the processing and issuing of overseas employment certificates to all Kuwait-bound workers. File photo by Noel Celis/AFP

First phase of OFW ID implementation starts

Dec 07, 2017 - 3:49 PM

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III says the OFW ID will still be given for free

13,000 OFWs already sent home from Saudi Arabia

Oct 30, 2017 - 1:50 PM

More than half of these workers are repatriated through the Saudi government's amnesty program launched March this year

SENT HOME. President Rodrigo Roa Duterte mingles with the 160 repatriated OFWs who were granted amnesty after they were found working illegally in the Kingdom Saudi Arabia upon their arrival on April 17, 2017. Malacañang photo

Giving a gift to new employer can benefit domestic workers abroad – study

Oct 25, 2017 - 5:50 PM

A study shows that making a favorable first impression on an employer can have long term benefits for some OFWs

Filipino entrepreneur brings a taste of Pinoy food to Qatar

Oct 13, 2017 - 2:24 PM

Entrepreneur Dahlia Agbanlog opens her first restaurant knowing that for Filipinos working abroad, there’s nothing like a cooked meal reminiscent of home

NEW BUSINESS. Dahlia Agbanlog in JKCMom cafe, which she opened last summer. Photo by OM

How much does it cost to work abroad?

Oct 04, 2017 - 5:00 PM

Here's what OFWs and their employers need to pay

LOOK: Pampanga hospital designates specific wing for OFWs

Sep 06, 2017 - 2:22 PM

The Jose B Lingad Memorial Regional Hospital in San Fernando Pampanga is the first of several government hospitals to set up an ‘OFW wing’

OFW WING. Jose B. Lingad Memorial Regional Hospital is setting up an OFW wing to accommodate the medical needs of Filipino migrant workers. Photo from the Office of Representative Aniceto Bertiz

#OFWRights: Align OFWs' repatriation with PH economic plans – experts

Sep 03, 2017 - 1:00 PM

In the 2016 elections Duterte received overwhelming support from OFWs – majority of whom voted for him on his promise to make working abroad an option instead of a necessity

JOB SEARCH. OFWs search for jobs online inside POEA.Photo by LeAnne Jazul/Rappler

How Duterte gov’t plans to bring OFWs back home

Aug 12, 2017 - 10:00 AM

The labor department banks on the millions of jobs that ‘Dutertenomics’ will generate and on the improved reintegration program for returning OFWs

TICKET TO WORK. Overseas Filipino workers applying for their overseas employment certificates through the POEA's Balik Manggagawa Online Processing System. Rappler file photo

2,000 more OFWs in Saudi Arabia sent home after amnesty extension

Jul 25, 2017 - 7:15 PM

A total of 7 697 overstaying Filipino workers have been repatriated from Saudi Arabia as of July 24

BACK HOME. More than 7,000 OFWs have been repatriated as of July 24, 2017. Photo by Jay Directo/Rappler

Over 5,000 OFWs in Saudi repatriated as amnesty program ends

Jun 28, 2017 - 2:54 PM

Some 2 241 OFWs granted amnesty are still in Saudi Arabia waiting for their tickets

REPATRIATED. President Rodrigo Roa Duterte mingles with the 160 repatriated Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) who were granted amnesty after they were found working illegally in the Kingdom Saudi Arabia. File photo by Ace Morandante / Malacañang

Unpaid wages leave Filipino workers stranded in Qatar

Jun 08, 2017 - 10:00 AM

For the workers stranded in the labor camps, reforms and resolutions cannot come fast enough

The workers check the documents to be sent to court. They haven't been paid since January 2017. They stopped working and filed the case expecting the company to pay their salary and the tickets back home. Doha, Qatar - May 21, 2017.

Duterte says department for OFWs to come 'in a few months'

Apr 15, 2017 - 4:24 PM

However the bills filed in Congress to create the proposed department remain pending at the committee level

FILIPINO COMMUNITY MEET. President Rodrigo Roa DUterte raises his fist as he took the center stage during the meeting with the Filipino Community at the Marriot Hotel in Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on April 12, 2017. Robinson Niñal Jr./Presidential Photo

News Briefs: March 13, 2017

Mar 13, 2017 - 9:30 AM

Stories from across the Philippines on Monday March 13

35 OFWs from Kuwait to be repatriated Wednesday

Feb 21, 2017 - 9:10 PM

OWWA’s Repatriation Assistance Division RAD vows to assist the repatriates

File Photo by Noel Celis/AFP

Body of OFW killed in Jordan arrives home

Feb 19, 2017 - 7:20 PM

Felma Maramag was reportedly killed by two Jordanians on February 5

GONE. Overseas Filipino worker Felma Maramag was reportedly killed by two Jordan nationals.

News Briefs: February 8, 2017

Feb 08, 2017 - 8:00 AM

Stories from across the Philippines on Wednesday February 8

Recto: Newly-approved OFW repatriation fund not enough

Dec 01, 2016 - 11:14 PM

Recto says the emergency repatriation fund for OFWs must reach at least P1 5 billion

File photo by Noel Celis/AFP

Qatar's 'illegals' scramble to leave under amnesty

Nov 27, 2016 - 11:22 AM

Thousands of undocumented residents are expected to leave Qatar before December 1 after Doha introduced a 3 month amnesty for those living in the country illegally to leave without legal consequences

Migrants gather at the Search and Follow Up Department in the Qatari capital Doha on November 8, 2016. Stringer/AFP

Hijacked Filipino seafarers return home after nearly 5 years

Oct 27, 2016 - 10:24 PM

UPDATED I am so happy This is what I had been praying for every night: to be with my family this Christmas Arnel Balbero says surrounded by his 4 siblings at the airport

RETURNING HOME. Filipino seafarers, held hostage in Somalia for 5 years, return to the Philippines on Flight EK 332. Photo by Jedwin M Llobrera

Success stories from the 8888 hotline

Oct 09, 2016 - 3:52 PM

Citizen complaints received through the hotline get forwarded to concerned agencies for immediate action

How Duterte gov't cared for OFWs in first 100 days

Oct 07, 2016 - 12:06 AM

In his campaign Duterte promised to make OFW concerns his top labor priority Did he live up to his promise?

Cacdac is new OWWA chief

Oct 04, 2016 - 11:31 AM

Claro Arellano a justice department prosecutor will replace Hans Cacdac at the POEA

Over 7,000 Saudi OFWs given financial aid - OWWA

Aug 12, 2016 - 9:30 PM

The agency says P20 000 in financial assistance has already been given to OFWs stranded in Saudi Arabia as well as those who have already been repatriated back to the Philippines

What delays aid for 11,000 stranded OFWs in Saudi?

Aug 09, 2016 - 9:29 PM

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration says it has started sending relief assistance to OFWs but the lack of manpower and records hamper their efforts

Unpaid, stranded OFWs in Saudi may now claim aid from OWWA

Aug 04, 2016 - 8:06 PM

Affected OFWs including those who have been repatriated to the Philippines are each entitled to a P20 000 cash assistance

OWWA on ‘excessive gadget purchases': They were free

Jul 11, 2016 - 10:00 PM

COA hits the agency for issuing high end gadgets to some personnel

Aquino and the continuing plight of OFWs

Jun 16, 2016 - 9:00 AM

President Benigno Aquino III promised OFWs that at the end of his administration working abroad will be a choice rather than a necessity Did he deliver?

How did President Benigno Aquino III address the needs of overseas Filipino workers in the past 6 years? Photo of Aquino by the Malacañang Photo Bureau, photo of OFWs by AFP

2.4 million OFWs to benefit from MEDplus by end-2016

Jun 02, 2016 - 1:15 PM

UPDATED The new program will provide one time financial aid not exceeding P50 000 for OFWs diagnosed with dreaded diseases

Santiago urges creation of body to monitor documented OFWs

Dec 19, 2015 - 4:15 PM

Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago makes the call following reports that overseas Filipino worker Thelma Gawidan was starved and forced to work without pay in Singapore

'Abused' OFW in Saudi Arabia dies – migrants' group

Oct 24, 2015 - 2:40 PM

Migrante Middle East calls on the Philippine government to investigate the untimely death of 25 year old Rehana Lusay Bayan

'HEADS MUST ROLL.' After being in coma for weeks, overseas Filipino worker Rina (not her real name) has died, according to Migrante-Middle East. File photo courtesy of Migrante-Middle East

The OEC is here to stay, OFWs in HK told

Aug 16, 2015 - 11:39 AM

POEA chief Hans Leo Cacdac says plans are underway to fully implement the online application system for Overseas Employment Certificates in Hong Kong

LONG LINES. OFWs line up in Hong Kong for their Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC). Photo by Daisy CL Mandap/The SUN-HK