Special job program for senior citizens to be launched at PUP
MANILA, Philippines — A special job program for senior citizens is set to be launched at the Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP), Ang Probinsyano party-list Rep. Ronnie Ong said Sunday.
The program initiated by Ong tapped the Department of Labor and Employment’s (DOLE) Tulong Panghanapbuhay para sa Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers (Tupad) program to provide employment for senior citizens in various government offices including public schools and state universities.
The program will be launched Monday at PUP which has entered into a memorandum of agreement (MOA) with Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III and Ong. Under the program, senior citizens who will be hired to work at PUP will do tasks that are important but not physically strenuous for at least three hours in the morning and three hours in the afternoon.
Employment will be given priority to senior citizens who live near various PUP campuses and their salaries will be drawn from DOLE’s TUPAD allocation, according to Ong. The pay will be based on the minimum salary in each region. In the National Capital Region, for example, they would get P537 per day.
Ong said another MOA would be signed with the University of the Philippines as he hopes this program would be adopted by other state universities and public schools nationwide.
“I’m really happy because we can now test this program if it is truly effective in making life easier and better for our beloved senior citizens. This is our own little way of showing our gratitude for their sacrifices,” Ong said in a statement.
The lawmaker is also pushing for the institutionalization of this special work-for-pay program by filing House Bill No. 5362 or the Senior Citizens Employment Opportunity Act to ensure the automatic employment allocation for Filipinos aged 60 years old and above.
The proposed law seeks to amend Section 5 of Republic Act No. 9994 or the Expanded Senior Citizens Act of 2010 to ensure that senior citizens, whose annual income fall below the poverty threshold as determined by the Philippine Statistics Authority, are given priority employment through job matches provided by the DOLE and the National Commission on Senior Citizens.
Under the bill, the private sector is also encouraged to hire senior citizens and in return, they shall be entitled to an additional tax deduction from their gross income equivalent to 70 percent of the total amount paid as wages to senior citizens, subject to compliance or the pertinent provisions of the Internal Revenue Code. /je
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