Philippines suspends accommodation, transport aid for returning OFWs


The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) has announced that it will stop its transportation and accommodation assistance programme for returning overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) beginning next month.

The suspension was based on the decision of the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) to have Metro Manila and most parts of the country under COVID Alert Level 1.

"In light of the IATF pronouncement placing the National Capital Region and other areas in the country on Alert Level 1 status, services and industries including public transportation are in full operating capacity," the OWWA said in an advisory.

"Hence, transportation assistance for returning OFWs shall be suspended effective June 1, 2022," it added.

The assistance will only be provided if OFWs are in distress as certified by the Philippine Overseas Labor Offices (POLO) or as evaluated by authorised OWWA airport officers.

The exemption also covers Filipinos returning to the country through government-initiated mass repatriation flights, specifically OFWs provided airfare by the POLOs through commercial flights.

Meanwhile, the OWWA clarified it will still assist partially vaccinated or unvaccinated OFWs who are required to undergo mandatory facility-based quarantine.

However, their transportation fares for going back to their home provinces, will not be borne by the OWWA.

Returning Filipino workers who will be needing assistance are advised to contact OWWA through their hotline or their Repatriation Assistance Division at (02) 88917601 local 5213 or through their email address:

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