DOLE: No complaints about treatment of Filipino workers in US

The Philippine Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said the overseas Filipino workers in the United States are being treated well and believe this will not change under the administration of President-elect Joe Biden.

“We don’t have so much to complain about the treatment of OFWs there. We haven’t heard much of OFWs being abused in the U.S. And I don’t think there will be (any problems) in the treatment of our country as far as America is concerned,” Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello said during a virtual forum on Wednesday, November 11.

“The ones being abused there are not OFWs but the illegal entrants, such as those who supposedly went there to study but looked for jobs,” he added.

Malacañang on Monday expressed hope that the new leadership will help undocumented Filipino workers in the U.S. get a chance to become legal residents.

There were approximately 313,000 undocumented Filipinos from 2012 to 2016, according to Migration Policy Institute (MPI) estimates, making up about 3% of the country’s total undocumented population.

“Pero…pagdating sa larangan ng immigration, inaasahan natin na sana na magkaroon ng policy shift under a Democratic administration dahil napakadami ng Pilipino na naninirahan sa Estados Unidos (But…in the area of immigration, we expect there will be a policy shift under a Democratic administration because there are many Filipinos living in the United States),” said Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque.

“Bagamat mayroon iilan sa kanila ay ‘yung mga tinatawag natin TNT o mga iligal, ay napakalaking papel ang ginagampanan nila sa Estados Unidos at mabigyan sana sila ng pagkakataon na maging legal sa Estados Unidos (Although some of them are TNT or illegal, they play a huge role in the United States and we hope they will be given a chance to become legal in the United States),” he added.

Roque also said that they have trust that the ties between the country and the U.S. will remain stable.

“Tiwala naman tayo na dahil napakalapit ng relasyon ng Pilipinas at ng Estados Unidos, patuloy na magiging mas mabuti pa ang ating samahan sa ilalim ng pamumuno ni President Duterte at ni President-elect Biden (We trust that with close ties between the Philippines and the U.S., we will continue and even see better relations under President Duterte and President-elect Biden),” he said.

Ritchel Mendiola

Ritchel Mendiola is a staff writer and reporter for the Asian Journal. You can reach her at [email protected].

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