THE National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC) is supporting the call to ban deployment of domestic workers to Kuwait until preventive measures have been adopted by the Philippine and Kuwaiti governments that will ensure and guarantee the promotion and protection of domestic workers’ rights and welfare.
Two OFWs in Kuwait, Jeanelyn Pardenal Villavende and Constancia Lago Dayag, were killed by their employers last 2019. On 11 May 2018, the gruesome death of Joanna Demafelis led to a diplomatic crisis between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines and the Government of the State of Kuwait, and a signing of Agreement on the Employment of Domestic Workers between the two countries. Unfortunately, the protection of rights and welfare of OFWs, most particularly the domestic workers, still failed to address this.
The NAPC Labor is calling for the review and renegotiation of the 2018 Agreement on the Employment of Domestic Workers to include live-out arrangement, instead of the usual live-in arrangement for domestic workers, and require employers to provide for their monthly housing allowance. Joint and solidarity liabilities of recruitment agencies of origin and destination countries should also be included in said agreement.
The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) should also strictly implement the bond deposit requirements including that of Foreign Recruitment Agencies for compliance of awarding of monetary liabilities, and standardize domestic workers’ contracts according to ILO Convention No. 189 and other similar international instruments that promote decent work.
While the investigations are ongoing, the NAPC Labor is urging the government to fully support the families of Demafelis, Villavende, and Dayag including but not limited to counseling, livelihood, and education, until justice has finally been served.