Senator Grace Poe on OFW Concerns

Senator Grace Poe vows to improve the lives of Overseas Filipino Workers like you. She prides in calling herself a former OFW who lived and worked in the US for years. Her platform for you is threefold.

First, she wants to give you portable PhilHealth cards. You can use such card in any part of the world. You don’t need to worry about medical bills in this way. This is a way of giving back since your OFW remittances contribute at least 26 billion dollars a year to the Philippine economy.

Second, Poe plans to set up a 24-hour hotline in all foreign posts to address your needs. You are free to call for assistance. This way, help is always within reach, wherever you are. This is useful in cases that require urgent responses.

Last, she vows to prepare the economy so you can return home. She said it’s hard to live far from family. She must know. She will make leaving the country optional and not a necessity. Jobs at home will make you stay with your loved ones.

Let us turn to her specific plans…

Grace Poe platform against abuse

Illegal recruitment. The Senator pledges increased protection before leaving and while abroad. She will push for more effective information campaign on the proper channels of looking and applying for jobs abroad. POEA and OWWA will lead in handing out guidebooks listing the rights of OFWs.

Poe aims to strengthen the Task Force Against Illegal Recruitment (TFAIR) too. She trusts that strong enforcement will stop the problem. So does shame campaign. She will create special courts for illegal recruitment cases alone.

Find out how you can avoid illegal recruitment here.

Employer abuse. Poe will push for bilateral talks with other foreign leaders. This aims to protect your welfare. Honorary Consular Officers will help aid hard-to-reach OFWs. You will have full access to the Assistance to Nationals section in the Philippine Embassy and the Legal Assistance Fund set aside for Filipinos abroad.

Grace Poe on fair treatment

High placement fees. Poe wants to “standardize” placement fees, although a maximum placement fee limit of equal to one-month salary exists. This will stop recruitment agencies from over charging and help you from being buried in debt. 

Corruption at the airports. She plans to strictly enforce laws and monitor enforcement to avoid OFWs being victims of corrupt officials. A hotline will be set up to report abuse against you and your family and allows you to get immediate response. There will be no waiver to punish, suspend or dismiss erring personnel.

Balikbayan boxes. She will not allow the Customs people to open the boxes and install x-ray machines to do away with manual inspection. Grace Poe plans not to impose additional taxes and duties. Your duty and tax free privileges must be observed and she supports raising the non-taxable value of contents of balikbayan boxes to 150,000 pesos.

These she plans to do if she wins the presidency. The final decision of the Supreme Court dismissed all pleas to disqualify her two months before the election day. She has now a serious shot at winning the election. Thanks to the absentee voting law, your 1.4 million ballots count. Will your collective vote propel Grace Poe to the presidency?

› Grace Poe

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