(PAGASA 24-HOUR PUBLIC WEATHER FORECAST as of Tuesday, 05 March 2024) Northeast Monsoon affecting Luzon. Butuan City, Agusan del Norte, Agusan del Sur, Dinagat Islands, Surigao del Norte and Surigao del Sur, will experience partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated rainshowers or thunderstorms due to Easterlies/Localized Thunderstorms. Possible flash floods or landslides during severe thunderstorms. Moderate to strong winds coming from Northeast to East will prevail with moderate to rough seas (1.2 to 2.8 meters).


Wednesday, 7 February 2024

DOLE urges employers to rightfully pay kasambahays

By Jennifer Gaitano

BUTUAN CITY – They work hard for their money, so you better treat and pay them right.

Paraphrasing a 40-year-old hit song by American singer Donna Summer, this in essence sums up the call of the Department of Labor and Employment to employers of household service workers, or kasambahays, in Agusan del Sur.

Speaking in a forum organized to mark Araw ng Kasambahay, DOLE Agusan del Sur Head Buhawe Corvera-Correa said employers should pay their household staff and should also pay their share of the contributions to the Social Security System (SSS), Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth), Employees Compensation Commission (ECC), and Pag-IBIG Fund, among others.

Corvera-Correa reiterated that under Republic Act 10361, otherwise known as the "Domestic Workers Act" or "Batas Kasambahay," welfare and the rights of domestic workers, or ‘kasambahays’ should at all times be protected.

“This legislation sets forth the minimum labor standards for domestic workers, including wages, benefits, and working conditions,” relayed Corvera-Correa.

“As stipulated in the said law, a domestic worker or kasambahay refers to any person engaged in domestic work within an employment relationship, such as, but not limited to, the following: general house helper, nursemaid or “yaya,” cook, gardener, or laundry person, but shall exclude any person who performs domestic work only occasionally or sporadically and not on an occupational basis,” Corvera-Correa added.

Shefurther revealed that DOLE shall develop a model employment contract for domestic workers thatshall, at all times, be made available free of charge to domestic workers, employers, representative organizations, and the general public. The DOLE shall widely disseminate information to domestic workers and employers on the use of such model employment contracts.

In cases where the employment of the domestic worker is facilitated through a private employment agency (PEA), the PEA shall keep a copy of all employment contracts of domestic workers and shall make them available for verification and inspection by the DOLE.

She also expressed gratitude to all the stakeholders for their support of this law and highlighted the significance of the celebration, emphasizing the crucial roles played by kasambahays. 

“This day marks something important to us, especially to our kasambahays, because as we celebrate this event, we value them, especially the role that they have. Let’s continue to work with them in harmony and give them what is due. We appreciate how they make our chores easier and more convenient; hence, we also have to pay them rightly in return,” she emphasized.

Participants from various sectors, including kasambahay and their employers, attended the Araw ng Kasambahay celebration with a learning session on the laws that protect the rights and welfare of the ‘kasambahays’. Photo courtesy of DOLE-Agusan del Sur.

There were also several learning sessions given to the participating kasambahays, including discussions that gave them enlightenment about the social benefits available to them. 

DOLE provided a comprehensive lecture on Kasambahay Rights, addressing the lack of awareness about their rights and privileges, while PhilHealth, ECC, SSS, and PAG-IBIG also discussed the various services offered by government agencies. 

Additionally, the DOLE Integrated Livelihood Program (DILP), or Kabuhayan Program, is a flagship service of the Department that was introduced to the kasambahays for potential future availment. 

Yolanda Gempesaw, a kasambahay for 10 years, expressed her appreciation to DOLE for implementing a program for their sector and for monitoring employers’ compliance withRA 10361.

“Mao ni ang una nako na pag-apil sa ing ani na seminar, ug nabati nako na nihatagan mi og pagtagad ug importansya sa DOLE. Salamat ni ani na higayon (This is my first time to attend this seminar, and I really felt that we were given due attention and value by DOLE. Thank you for this opportunity),” she emphasized.

Participants not only gained knowledge but also received tokens from DOLE and partner agencies to support their daily activities at work.

As the lead agency in the implementation of Republic Act No. 10361, the DOLE, in collaboration with stakeholders, remains committed to safeguarding the welfare and rights of kasambahays, who are also the living heroes of many Filipino families. (JPG/PIA-Agusan del Sur with a report from DOLE-Agusan del Sur)