DOLE to hire displaced informal workers as contact tracers | Inquirer News

DOLE to hire displaced informal workers as contact tracers

/ 06:08 PM March 30, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said Tuesday that it will hire displaced informal workers as contact tracers under its emergency employment program to help curb the rate of COVID-19 infection in the NCR Plus.

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said in a statement that local government units (LGUs) will just need to train workers to become contact tracers for a period of 10 to 15 days in their respective communities.

He said he had already advised this new measure to LGUs covered by the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) through the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) in a recent meeting of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases.


By employing displaced workers as contact tracers, LGUs will be able to augment their manpower requirement to trace and identify close contacts of COVID-19 patients, said Bello.


“I was talking with Interior and Local Government Undersecretary Epimaco Densing and he mentioned about DILG’s funding issues, that is why I volunteered the emergency employment program of DOLE,” he said.

“There is an urgent need to strengthen the contract tracing efforts in the country, and displaced and disadvantaged workers under the emergency employment program of the Department will be hired as contact tracers,” he added.

Under the Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced (TUPAD) Workers Program, displaced, underemployed and seasonal workers are provided with emergency employment for a minimum period of 10 days and a maximum of 30 days, depending on the nature of work to be performed.

Bello said the DOLE will leave to the DILG the training for displaced workers as contact tracers.

“We will leave it (training) to the better judgment of the DILG (Department of the Interior and Local Government) in selecting the worker-beneficiaries as contact tracer,” he said.

“It will depend on the number of contact tracers each LGU will need. We have sufficient budget for that,” he assured.


On top of the TUPAD program, Bello said that DOLE’s COVID-19 Adjustment Measures Program, a one-time cash assistance program for formal workers affected by the pandemic, will soon commence. He added that the labor department will again be accepting applications from employers on behalf of their workers.

ECQ in the NCR Plus, which covers Metro Manila, Cavite, Laguna, Rizal, and Bulacan, started on March 29 and is scheduled to lapse on April 4.


DILG to ask more funds for contract tracers under proposed Bayanihan 3

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PH still has no unified contact tracing system nationwide


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TAGS: coronavirus Philippines, COVID-19

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