“Higit pa sa benepisyo ang ibinibigay na serbisyo”
Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz yesterday said this principle served as the framework of the Katulong at Gabay sa Manggagawang may Kapansanan (KaGabay) of the Employees’ Compensation Program (ECP) for person with work related disabilities (PWRDs).
“It is our duty to ensure that we are able to address the varying needs of persons who meet work-related accidents, or those who contract work related diseases, especially those needing rehabilitation,” said Baldoz, who is the chairperson of the Board of Trustees of the Employees Compensation Commission, an attached agency of the DOLE.
Citing a report of Employees Compensation Commission (ECC) Executive Director Stella Zipagan-Banawis, Baldoz said that from January to November 2015, the ECC benefited 1,023 PWRDs with various rehabilitation services, ranging from livelihood and skills training to small capital grants and technical assistance services.
In 2015, Director Banawis said the ECC saw 277 PWRDs avail of free livelihood training, such as on meat processing, Start Your Own Business Enterprise, swine/hog/cattle/goat raising, bread and pastry production, soap making, mushroom production and swine management technology.
For skills, 23 PWRDs received ECC training on autocad, shielded metal arc welding, housekeeping, bookkeeping, computer hardware servicing NC II, and encoding NC II.
“All these PWRDs who finished their livelihood/skills training with us were also provided with transportation and meal allowance,” Banawis reported.
She explained that after every training, the ECC sees to it that the PWRDs were also guided and assisted, especially as they start their individual undertakings.
“In 2015, our Work Contingency Prevention and Rehabilitation Division (WCPRD) was able to visit and monitor the progress made by 105 PWRDs in their respective business ventures”, Banawis added.
During the year, the ECC also participated in the Special Program for Employment of Students (SPES), providing 46 children of PWRDs opportunities to earn and learn through the SPES. “We deployed 22 males and 24 female students at the ECC Central Office in Makati, Occupational Safety and Health Center (OSHC), several branches of Social Security System (SSS), local government units and at various offices of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) for 35 days of SPES, and we paid them Php 416,209.50 in allowances, equivalent to the 60 percent of their total allowance benefits,” she said.
Through the KaGabay Program, the ECC provided free physical and occupational therapy and other related rehabilitation services to 219 PWRDs in 2015, and also paid meal and transportation allowance to 201 of them. The WCPRD monitored the progress and health condition of 150 of the beneficiaries through home visits. Thirty-one (31) PWRDS were also provided with free prosthesis or assistive devices.
Through home visits, Director Banawis said the ECC was able to monitor 47 who are now gainfully employed, 33 of whom were retained by their former companies, while the other 14 have worked for new employers. Of those monitored, 23 PWRDs have started a business undertaking and 55 have expanded their businesses.
Realizing the need for ECC’s presence to be felt as soon as a work-contingency occurs, the ECC’s Quick Response Team Program provided immediate help to workers or their families in the form of psycho-social counselling as well as assistance in the filing of EC claims with either the Social Security System or the Government Service Insurance System.
As of November 2015, the ECC-QRTP responded to 179 work-related incidences; visited, counselled, and provided information on the ECP to 496 PWRDs; and facilitated the release of EC benefits to 157 victims of work related contingencies and/or their beneficiaries. “These EC benefits amounted to P2,709,123.41,” Banawis shared.
She said the ECC was able to achieve its goals through the help of its Regional Extension Units (REUs) in different regions of the country as well as through partnering with other DOLE and government agencies, hospitals and training centers.
Baldoz, commending the ECC, said she hopes the agency will be able to help more PWRDs in more ways possible in the coming years.