The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said emergency relief assistance will be extended to sugar workers who have been affected by typhoons Ondoy and Pepeng.
Labor and Employment Secretary Marianito D. Roque said the DOLE has allocated P3 million from the socio-economic project fund (SEPF) of the social amelioration program (SAP) for the provision of relief assistance to affected sugar workers as provided for by DOLE Department Order No. 98, series of 2009.
Roque said the DOLE order was issued upon the recommendation of the Sugar Tripartite Council Executive Committee in line with R.A. Act. No. 6982, or the Sugar Amelioration Act of 1991. The law provides for the implementation of SAP which is a production sharing scheme instituted in the sugar industry to augment the income of sugar workers.
He said the relief assistance as provided for by D.O. 98 intends to benefit some 10,000 typhoon affected sugar mill and field workers in Cagayan, Pampanga, Tarlac, Batangas and Camarines Sur.
The DOLE Chief also cited a report from Bureau of Rural Workers (BRW) Director Alex E. Maraan, which said that the emergency relief assistance would be released to mill, planters and sugar workers organizations in milling districts affected by the two typhoons.
He added that the concerned mill or planters associations in coordination with their planter-members and unaffiliated planters would determine the appropriate mode of assistance to the affected workers whether in cash or in kind and distribute the same directly to affected sugar workers.
To ensure that the relief assistance was received by the affected sugar workers, the concerned mills, planters or workers organizations would submit to the BRW a progress report and a special payroll documenting receipt of the assistance by the affected sugar workers.
In view of the urgency of the situation, the fund for emergency relief assistance would be released to the participating mill or planters associations or workers organizations in full, Roque said adding that the distribution of the allocated fund would be based on the production share to the SEPF during Crop year 2007-2008.