Bishop backs creation of Department for OFWs

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BALANGA City: The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines–Episcopal Commission on Migrants and Itinerant People (CBCP–ECMI) on Tuesday expressed support to the plan of President Rodrigo Duterte to create a separate department for overseas Filipino workers (OFWs).

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CBCP–ECMI chairman Ruperto Santos, bishop of the Diocese of Balanga, said with the creation of the department, specific needs of OFWs will be properly attended to.

“Their basic interests will solely be safeguarded and their personal rights and privileges will be promoted and preserved,” the Bataan prelate added.

Santos suggested that the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration and the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration could also be under the watch of the Department for OFWs.

“With POEA and OWWA under the new agency, common and united efforts for the welfare and well-being of our workers abroad will be rightly and justly addressed,” he said.

According to the bishop, it is now high time and very necessary to give more importance and protection to the country’s OFWs.

“We at CBCP–ECMI appreciate the kind gestures and compassion of our government toward our OFWs,” Santos said.

The President, during his official visit to the Middle East last week, announced plans to create the new department and the building of a hospital for Filipino workers abroad.

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