The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Regional Office in Zamboanga City reported more migrant workers benefited from the One-Stop Service Center for Overseas Filipino Workers (OSSCO) in a span of five months since its launch In August last year.
Labor Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III said that the establishment of the service centers was in response to the directive of President Rodrigo R. Duterte to make the services of the government more accessible to OFWs.
In a report to Bello, Regional Director Sisinio B. Cano said the OSSC served a total of 9,590 migrant workers as of early January.
The report also showed that the service center responded to 8,130 queries; received a total of 6,144 documents for processing; issued 4,366 certificates; provided 5,900 forms; issued 4,414 information, education, and communication (IEC) materials; and accomplished 1,309 feedback forms.
Cano also said the center provided 351 legal assistance to OFWs who have problems with their employers and had issues with their travel documents which prevented them to fly back to the Philippines.
The main OFW one-stop service center was established by DOLE and Philippine Overseas Employment Administration on August 15, 2016 at the POEA Office in Mandaluyong City.
Consequently, more regional service centers were established in Manna Mall, San Fernando City, La Union; City Tourism Office, Tuguegarao City, Cagayan; Baguio Convention Center, Baguio City; Clark Freeport Zone, Pampanga; OWWA Regional Office 4A in Calamba City; Robinson’s Place, Puerto Princesa City, Pacific Mall, Legaspi City; SM City, Cebu City; Robinson’s Place, Iloilo City; Robinson’s Place, Bacolod City; DOLE Regional Office No. 8, Tacloban City; Goodwill Center, Zamboanga City; OWWA Regional Office No. 10, Cagayan de Oro City; Butuan City Hall Complex, Butuan City and New City Hall, Koronadal City.
Filipinos who are currently working or planning to work overseas are encouraged to visit the service centers to address their various concerns from 8:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M., Mondays to Fridays.
Bello reiterated their aim to shorten the processing time for OFW documents, adding that DOLE also seeks to reduce the expenses of OFWs since the services of concerned government agencies can already be availed of in just one location.
The partner government agencies at OSSCO are Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA), Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), Professional Regulation Commission (PRC), Maritime lndustry Authority (MARINA), Home Development Mutual Fund (HDMF), Philippine Health lnsurance Corporation (PhilHealth), Social Security System (SSS), Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), Bureau of Immigration (BI), National Bureau lnvestigation (NBI), Commission on Higher Education (CHED), Tourism lnfrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA), Philippine National Police (PNP), and Bureau of lnternal Revenue (BIR).