SAN FERNANDO CITY, La Union, April 21 (PIA) - - At least 40,076 displaced workers from the tourism sector in Region 1 have received P5,000 each cash aid from the national government through the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) in collaboration with the Department of Tourism (DOT).
Ilocos Region Tourism Director Joseph Francisco Ortega said, as of April 14, the DOLE Region 1 had already disbursed P200.38 million for the workers in the tourism sector in the region.
The amount was remitted in payment centers where the workers may claim in their respective areas.
He said the financial aid is part of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) Adjustment Measures Program (CAMP) of the DOLE for the tourism sector under the Bayanihan to Recover as One Act, or Bayanihan 2.
The CAMP program is a one-time P5,000 cash aid provided by the government to affected workers in private establishments. The government has allocated P3.1 billion funds for the tourism sector workers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to Director Ortega, the DOT Region 1 had endorsed to DOLE a total of 48,012 workers who were affected by the pandemic.
The DOLE had initially approved 40,076 workers as recipients of the assistance while the remaining 7,936 workers are still waiting for approval.
Of the 40,076 tourism workers, 4,034 workers are from Ilocos Norte; 3,027 from Ilocos Sur; 5,265 from La Union; and 27,750 from Pangasinan.
"Currently, our office is requesting another fund from the DOLE to assist more tourism workers to receive cash assistance," he said.
Aside from the displaced tourism workers, Ortega said the tourism workers under flexible work arrangements are also qualified to receive assistance.
Meanwhile, Ortega said the DOT Region 1 is now working on plans on the massive inoculation against COVID 19 for all workers in the tourism sector in the region in preparation for the full re-opening of the tourism sites in the region.
"The inclusion of workers in the tourism sector particularly those working in the airports and quarantine hotels as recipients of a free anti-COVID-19 vaccine in the vaccination priority list: A4, is a great help for them. We are overwhelmingly expressing our gratitude to Secretary Carlito Galvez of the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process who worked out for the inclusion of our tourism workers in the priority list of those who will receive the vaccine," said Ortega. (JCR/FGL, PIA 1)