DOLE, Bomedco tripartite council reps meet to tackle solutions to workers' woes

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THE Department of Labor and Employment in Central Visayas (DOLE 7) has met with representatives from different sectors of the District Tripartite Council (DTC) of the oldest sugar plant in Cebu to tackle ways on how to help workers affected by the sugar crisis.

DOLE 7 Director Lilia Estillore said more than 200 planters, millers, field workers and mill workers of Bogo-Medellin Milling Company (Bomedco) have been affected after the company slowed down its operation due to the crisis.

The highest labor official in the region said the department has an available scholarship for the children of the affected workers, as well as livelihood assistance program called Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers (Tupad).

Through the program, the beneficiaries will work for a minimum period of 10 days and will receive a minimum daily wage.

"Sa part sa DOLE, nag offer ta sa atong livelihood assistance to the workers. Ang union nagkonsulta pud sa ilang mga officers kon unsay pangkabuhayan project para sa mga affected members," Estillore said.

Estillore said the sugarcane planters are hopeful that their livelihoods will gradually return to normal after experiencing problems, as some harvesters resigned from their jobs to work in the construction industry.

The 94-year-old company in northern Cebu recently suspended its operation for one month from July 15 to August 15.

Based on data from DOLE in Central Visayas, about 240 of its workers have been under the “No Work, No Pay” arrangement for a month. (PAC, TPT)