OFWs join National Day of Action pressing Pres. Duterte to raise wages to P750 and ban contractualization

“We join the workers and the people in the clamour for an immediate increase of the daily minimum wage to P750/day. If the President will push this and couple it with ending contractualization, overseas Filipino workers will opt to come home and contribute their labor and skills for nation-building.”

This was the statement of Mic Catuira, Acting Secretary General of Migrante International, the largest global alliance of overseas Filipinos as they joined the National Day of Action for National Minimum Wage and Against Contractualization today.

“Hundreds of thousands of OFWs who are receiving a basic salary of US$400-500/month will prefer to work in the Philippines as the income that they can raise in our country will be at par with the meager pay they receive abroad, said Catuira.

Based on the data of the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration, since 2011, the Philippines has been annually deploying at least 200,000 OFWs, mainly Household Service Workers and General Laborers, who receive monthly salaries of 400 US Dollars and 1,500 Saudi Riyals respectively. According to the Philippine Statistics Authority, in 2015, these workers account for 33% of the total deployment.

“We also urge the President to completely deviate from the government’s dependence on labor export and remittances of OFWs. This method to save the country’s deflating economy has long gone bankrupt. Only through taking steps in building the domestic economy through genuine land reform and national industrialization and ensuring social protection can joblessness and forced migration be truly addressed.

Tomorrow, October 8, Migrante and other peoples’ organizations, will hold a rally in Mendiola to mark the 100th day in office of President Duterte. The rally will call for the fulfillment of the People’s Agenda for Change which was presented to the President last July. The Agenda pressed on the new adminstration to implement much needed socio-economic reforms in line with the president’s promise of change. ###