The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) through the Bureau of Workers with Special Concerns (BWSC) conducted an orientation workshop for DOLE Regional Child Labor Program Implementers on December 11-15, 2017 at the Ramada Manila Central.
Sixteen DOLE Regional Focal Persons and 32 Provincial Focal Persons, who are mostly new in their designation as child labor program implementers, were informed about the new laws, policies and issuances relating to child labor and provided with updates on DOLE Child Labor Prevention and Elimination Program and other related programs of partner agencies.
“There have been many developments in the DOLE Child Labor Prevention and Elimination Program as well as in the Philippine Program Against Child Labor (PPACL). There are new policy issuances as well as new initiatives that were launched which we would like to share with you. Since most of the child labor program focal persons in the regions and provinces are newly designated, we planned for this activity in order for you to be updated and properly guided in the implementation of our anti-child labor program”, said BWSC Director Ma. Karina Perida-Trayvilla in her welcome remarks.
In this regard, Undersecretary Joel B. Maglunsod recognized the efforts of BWSC for conducting such activity and highlighted the importance of capacity building in program implementation. “Naniniwala ako na ang effective and successful implementation ng isang programa ay nakasalalay sa mga implementers nito. Kung nauunawaan ng mga implementers ang kanilang ginagawa ay magiging madali para sa kanila ang pagpapatupad nito”, Undersecretary Maglunsod said.
Aside from its objective of informing the participants on the latest laws and development on child labor, the activity also served as a platform to discuss the issues and concerns of the DOLE regional child labor program implementers. The activity also enabled the participants to think of strategies to eradicate child labor, in accordance with the Philippine Development Plan 2017-2022.
“Ang problema ng child labor ay hindi madaling lutasin. Hindi kaya lamang ng DOLE ito. Kailangan nating makipag-ugnayan sa iba’t ibang sektor upang magkaroon ng impact ang ating ginagawa. Kailangang pagtulungang lutasin ang ugat ng problema ng child labor – ang kahirapan. Kung kaya’t ang DOLE ay may mga programa tulad ng pagpapatupad ng tamang pasahod at livelihood programs para maiangat ang kabuhayan ng ating mga manggagawa”, Undersecretary Maglunsod said.
Under the Philippine Development Plan 2017-2022, the target is to withdraw at least 630,000 children from child labor by 2022 or around 30% of the 2.1 million children engaged in hazardous work, according to the 2011 Survey on Children. Hence, as a focal agency in the prevention and elimination of child labor in the country and as the chairperson of the National Child Labor Committee which serves as the coordinating mechanism for the implementation of the PPACL, the DOLE commits itself to further conduct support activities that will improve the program holistically.