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Gov’t hiring 4,754 new contact tracers for MM

AS part of the government’s efforts to ramp up contact tracing, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) said that some 4,754 new contact tracers will be hired and trained for deployment to local government units (LGUs) in Metro Manila starting May 1.

DILG Officer-in-Charge Bernardo C. Florece Jr. said the new contact tracers will be hired under the Department of Labor and Employment’s (DOLE) Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers or TUPAD program, a community-based package of assistance that provides emergency employment for displaced workers, underemployed and seasonal workers.

With the surge of COVID-19 cases, we really need to pool our resources and work together to contain the spread of the virus. Hence, we would like to thank DOLE Secretary Silvestre Bello for agreeing to hire contact tracers under their TUPAD program as this will help boost contact tracing in the metropolis which is the country’s epicenter of the pandemic,” he said.

During Thursday’s Laging Handa press briefing, Florece said the new contact tracers will add to the existing 10,097 contact tracers in the National Capital Region, bringing it closer to the ideal people to contact tracer ratio of 1:800.

Of the 4,754 contact tracers to be hired, Quezon City stands to get the highest number of new contact tracers at 1,084, followed by Manila with 657 and Caloocan with 585.

The allocation for other Metro Manila LGUs are as follows: 217 in Las Piñas; 215 in Makati; 135 in Malabon; 143 in Mandaluyong; 166 in Marikina; 186 in Muntinlupa; 92 in Navotas; 246 in Parañaque; 154 in Pasay; 279 in Pasig; 45 in San Juan; 297 in Taguig; 229 in Valenzuela; and 24 in Pateros.

According to Florece, the educational requirement for contact tracers has been relaxed under DOLE’s TUPAD program compared to the DILG’s own hiring program.

We want to accommodate the displaced workers from the informal sector kaya basta nakapagtapos ng high school ay puwede ng mag-apply bilang contact tracer,” he said, adding that those with experience in dealing with people will have greater chances of being hired.

Applicants can send their application letter, barangay certificate to prove their residency as a displaced/disadvantaged worker and with no derogatory record, and medical certificates to the Public Employment Service Office (PESO) in all city halls in Metro Manila.

They may also send an email with the required documents to their local PESO whose contact details may be accessed thru the link bit.ly/PESO-CT-Apply.

Applications will be received from April 16 to April 22., after which they will be screened and evaluated by a team from DILG, DOLE and the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority. Those who will be chosen will be trained by the DILG-National Capital Region on Contact Tracing protocols and procedures.