DMW Office Ready to Assist OFWs in Macau

July 12, 2022 – The Department of Migrant Workers office is prepared to assist Macau-based overseas Filipino workers who have been exposed to COVID-19 or will be affected by the weeklong suspension of all commercial and industrial business activities as a result of the recent surge.

Secretary Susan “Toots” Ople of the Department of Migrant Workers urged Macau’s overseas workers to comply with government instructions by remaining at home and following health procedures intended to break community transmission of the disease.

The number of overseas Filipino workers in the Special Administrative Region (SAR) is said to be 26,400, with half of them working as household helpers. In Macau, unlike in Hong Kong, the majority of household staff reside in their own homes under a “live-out” arrangement.

dmw office ready to assist ofws in macau

Filipino Community Leaders in Macau Meet to Discuss Assistance to OFWs

Ople, together with DFA Undersecretary for Migrant Workers Eddie de Vega, met by phone over the weekend with representatives from the Philippine Consulate in Macau, including Consul-General Porfirio Mayo, Jr., and leaders of Filipino communities to coordinate efforts to communicate with as many affected OFWs as feasible.

Ople said “Based on the assessment of Labor Attaché Atty. Ma. Nena German, the probability of mass retrenchment of workers during the weeklong suspension of non-essential business activities will not take place. This is purely a health-related and temporary measure meant to disrupt the spread of the coronavirus,”

“We are closely monitoring the situation because of the ‘No Pay Leave’ policy that the Macau government has declared for the entire week. Our consul general will be using diplomatic channels to bring our concern over this labor policy to the relevant authorities in Macau. Meanwhile, all hands are on deck to bring as many COVID-care packages and food packs to OFWs who may have neither the means nor the mobility to buy food and medicines,” she added.

Impact of Suspension Order on OFWs in Macau

All foreign workers have been requested to take the personal Rapid Test every day since the start of this most recent COVID-19 epidemic, and the Nucleic Acid Amplification Test (NAT) every other day in Macau government-funded testing facilities.

To date, 57 Filipinos have shown symptoms of the virus in red and yellow zones (command centers) and hotel quarantines, while 26 other workers have tested positive for COVID-19 or are close contacts. Meanwhile, 100 OFWs were given food rations by the consulate at first.

OWWA $200 COVID-19 Assistance for Active Members

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) Administrator Hans Cacdac says that COVID -19 symptomatic and need of hospitalization or facility isolation active OWWA members may use the benefit amounting to $200 in COVID After Care Financial Assistance.

The Philippine Consulate will continue to distribute food packs, medicines, and vitamin supplements to the affected OFWs in order to assist them through the week-long suspension period.

The consulate, on the other hand, has offered food packs to all OFWs. The food packages are available for all OFWs while they are on suspension.

Philippines in Macau Helplines

OFWs may reach the Philippine Consulate in Macau through the following numbers:

  • OWWA: 6258-7887
  • POLO: 6687-2509

They may also contact their Filipino community groups and networks to submit their requests for assistance to the consulate.

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