Displaced workers hired as contact tracers in the Philippines
The Philippine government is hiring displaced informal workers as contact tracers in a bid to reign in the spread of COVID-19 within the community.
“We need contact tracers, that’s why we told the Department of [the Interior and] Local Government to tap the beneficiaries of the emergency employment program for the job,” said Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III in a virtual briefing on Monday, according to The Philippine Star.
Under the Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers programme, the Department of Labour and Employment (DOLE) would provide emergency employment to informal workers who lost their jobs based on the requirement of local government units.
Bello highlighted that the enhanced lockdown guidelines, known otherwise as Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) in Metro Manila, Cavite, Rizal, Laguna and Bulacan is expected to result in worker displacement, especially among daily wage workers or staff employed under the “no work, no pay” scheme.
The ECQ can also affect business operations, which would impact employment, he added.
Prior to the implementation of the ECQ in March, DOLE recorded over 71,000 worker displacements due to businesses winding up and retrenchment exercises.