DOLE Initiates Campaign Against Child Labor Among Mangyan Communities in Mindoro
The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) launched a campaign to combat child labor among the Mangyan, an indigenous group situated within the island of Mindoro last August 16, 2019. They started an information campaign in partnership with other government agencies in the province. The event happened at the Saclag Settlement Farm School – San Teodoro, Mindoro Oriental.
According to DOLE-Mindoro Oriental Chief Juliana H. Ortega, at least 60 Mangyan children and their parents from a barangay in San Teodoro were in attendance. The indigenous members attended an orientation detailing anti-child labor laws and policies, livelihood support, and children’s rights.
Another plan for the Mangyan Community is the establishment of a school which serves as their attempt to reach out to the indigenous community. It aims to provide Mangyans access to proper education. The labor agency created these projects to save the community from child labor ran by remorseless individuals within the area.
Government Agencies Provide Assistance During the Campaign
The Philippine National Police (PNP), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), and the local government of San Teodoro attended the event as they share their programs and services to supplement DOLE’s plan in protecting the children of the Mangyan community. The labor agency will also assess the parents for livelihood assistance.
DOLE expressed their gratitude to the government agencies who attended the campaign to support the fight against child labor within the indigenous communities of the Philippines. They pledged to coordinate with the partner agencies to establish proper safeguards in addressing the growing problem of child labor.
DOLE: More than 85,000 Child Laborers Profiled in the Country
According to DOLE’s research last June of 2019, they profiled more than 85,000 child laborers in 16 different regions in the country. They managed to refer at least 18,651 children to the appropriate government agencies to provide the necessary services and assistance needed by their families.
“We must first assess their needs and refer these children and their families to appropriate agencies and organizations for the provision of necessary assistance to remove them from child labor,” Bello said in a statement last June 28, 2019.
Initially, the labor agency provided Nego-Karts (Negosyo sa Kariton), and livelihood starter kits to enable the families of child laborers in establishing small businesses. They also partnered with the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) and various industrial tripartite councils to provide skills training for child laborers to help them acquire a decent employment opportunity.
“We must work together in advocating for a child-labor-free Philippines by understanding the problem that puts our children at harm,” he said.