REP. JOCELYN P. TULFO
Vice-Chair, Committee on Overseas Workers Affairs
https://www.facebook.com/jocelyntulfoinaction/ | 09177292437
PREVENT ‘BRAIN DRAIN’ END TERRIBLE WAGES, UNDIGNIFIED WORK CONDITIONS
I foresee a new exodus of Filipinos to countries that would accept them and give them wages higher than the undignified wages and working conditions we have in our pandemic-stricken country.
The so-called brain drain decades ago would be like water coming out of the faucet compared to the gushing fire hydrant that will start late this year to this time next year.
Can the government do anything to avert this greater OFW exodus? No.
Unless by some miracle there will be only one national minimum wage that is double or triple the minimum wage rates of NCR, Calabarzon or Region 7. Unless new and equitable minimum wage rates for all entry level jobs are mandated by law.
Those are two miracles the national government cannot possibly make happen soon and not even in 10 to 20 years.
The only thing our government can do is make it easier for Filipinos to find work abroad and take care of the families they leave behind.
Matiisin po ang mga Pilipino, ngunit may sukdulan o hangganan rin. Darating ang panahon na mauubos muli ang pasensya ng Pilipino. Titiisin niya ang mawalay sa pamilya kung kapalit nito’y ginhawa mula sa gutom at karukhaan.
Pushed away by the terrible wages we have nationwide, millions of low-skilled Filipinos will choose to be slaves overseas because over there household service workers and laborers get paid two to three times more than the sub-survival wages in our country.
Hundreds of thousands of Filipino professionals and highly-skilled specialists will feel justly-treated in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and North America with much higher wages and vastly better work and living conditions abroad.
It will only be a matter of time before the small armies of BPO workers would rather be drones overseas than drones in the homeland. Many of them are just waiting for the right time and right opportunity to come before them.
As soon as the new normal stabilizes, many of the young doctors, nurses, medtechs, and other health professionals who will survive COVID will pack up and leave for better jobs anywhere overseas.
Not even the Build-Build-Build will be enough to keep our engineers, master electricians, master plumbers, and welders.
The social and family impact will be earth-shaking. But the new OFWs will find ways to get their families out of the Philippines, so they can all be together overseas. (END)