Bello says Filipinos in Hong Kong in 'good condition'

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 28 2022 10:19 AM

Police officers disperse domestic workers gathering on their rest day, following the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Hong Kong, China February 20, 2022. Lam Yik, Reuters
Police officers disperse domestic workers gathering on their rest day, following the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Hong Kong, China February 20, 2022. Lam Yik, Reuters

MANILA - Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III on Monday denied reports that some overseas Filipino workers in Hong Kong were terminated by employers after testing positive for COVID-19.

A report earlier said nearly 70 domestic helpers in Hong Kong were homeless and sick, citing data by a coalition of 14 NGOs for migrant workers.

But in an interview with ANC, Bello said these claims were false. 

“All of our OFWs in Hong Kong are in very good condition. The news about our OFWs being positive and terminated are not true,” Bello said.

"In our country, we do not dismiss workers because of COVID, much more in Hong Kong," he added. 

Those who tested positive were brought to facilities "where they will be properly treated," Bello said.

In Hong Kong, employers who will fire workers due to COVID will have to pay a fine of HK$300,000, he said. 

Meanwhile, in terms of jobs in the Philippines, Bello said the country could revert to pre-pandemic employment numbers in 6 to 8 months if the Alert Level 1 is imposed and maintained.

In the latest February survey by the Philippine Statistics Authority, there were 3.27 million jobless Filipinos as unemployment rose 6.6 percent. 

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