Labor chief wants stiffer penalties for hiring of illegal foreign workers
MANILA, Philippines – Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III on Thursday said he wants stiffer penalties for companies who hire illegal foreign workers.
Bello said he is asking Congress to give the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) the authority to order the closure of erring firms who continuously hire illegal aliens.
He noted that the agency could only impose fines of P10,000 per illegal foreigner employee.
“‘Yun nga ang hinihingi ko from Congress. They should give DOLE that power (to order the closure of erring companies),” Bello said.
“Sa ngayon fine pa pa lang eh,” he added.
Foreign nationals who want to secure jobs in the country and work for more than six months must first obtain an Alien Employment Permit (AEP).
It is the DOLE that will issue the AEP but it will only be issued to foreigners who can do jobs that Filipinos cannot carry out or are unwilling handle.
“Wala dapat maagawan ng trabaho na Pilipino dahil sa amin sa DOLE we will not issue an AEP kung may Pilipino na kayang gawin at gustong gawin ang trabaho,” Bello said.
“May instances na kaya ng Pilipino pero ayaw ng Pilipino. In this case, we can issue an AEP,” he added. / gsg
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