The health crisis produced far-reaching impacts on the economy with massive layoffs and the pervasive implementation of business closures as part of employers’ cost-cutting measures to keep businesses afloat. More so, the pandemic had made the labor market increasingly difficult to enter due to higher skills demanded by employers, social distancing protocols, and lower job availability brought by reduction measures of industries. In turn, the local recovery responses from various local government units (LGU) are intensified to address the immediate employment concerns of its constituents.

In a direct response to its local constituents, the Local Government of Parañaque through the Public Employment Service Office (PESO) in partnership with the Department of Labor and Employment – MUNTAPARLAS Field Office, had conducted a Jobseeker’s Forum under the Gender and Development (GAD) with Mini Job Fair on April 29, 2022, at the 2nd Floor, Parañaque City Hall, Parañaque City.

Said activity is part of the PESO’s priority employment facilitation program which seeks to capacitate workforce-ready applicants through the provision of application process assistance, employment coaching, and learning sessions on worker’s rights and responsibilities and to inculcate and remind the city residents of the extensive and responsive actions of the LGU for local unemployment and displacement of constituents.

In addition, the event had also streamlined the job-matching process for both hiring recruiters and potential employees. It provided an accessible and cost-effective system to immediately connect participating employers to job applicants in their locality.

On this 1-day Special Recruitment Activity (SRA) alone, 36 out of the 110 hopeful applicants were hired-on-the-spot (HOTS) to various positions by (4) four participating employers such as Sports Central, Acabar, X-Power, and Jollibee-PITX.

In effect, this prompt hiring will positively affect the city’s economic situation and shall lead to better productivity in their locality due to lower unemployment.

As part of the program, PESO was able to supplement the knowledge and enrich the applicants’ chances of getting hired by providing them with employment coaching. Ms. Amie Martin, Assistant PESO Manager, educated applicants with up-to-date labor market information (LMI) and employment strategies to increase the employability of job applicants. In the learning session, applicants were guided on the step-by-step process of the job application process from pre- to post-application and were informed on the PESO programs and services to attain employment success.

Furthermore, Mr. Edgardo Vamoria, Labor and Employment Officer III of MUNTAPARLAS Field Office, discussed the General Labor Standards (GLS) which primarily covered concepts such as statutory and mandatory benefits of workers; rights and responsibilities of employees; tenure of service; as well as scope and limitation of management’s prerogative. With the GLS orientation, participants were made aware of pertinent labor laws which can help improve their working environment and will caution workers from labor exploitation.

Meanwhile, Mr. Cyrus Dale Ronquillo, a successful HOTS applicant, shared the benefits of conducting this event with residents like him. On his end, the activity has advantages beyond securing an immediate source of income to support his family’s needs. They had also gained invaluable learnings on their basic employee rights, roles, and responsibilities.

Ronquillo said: “Aking natutunan ang wasto at madaling paraan sa paghahanap ng trabaho. Dito ay aking natutunan ang mga karapatan ng empleyado. Ang wastong pagbabayad sa mga empleyado, mga karapatan, at benepisyong pangkalusugan at mga wastong alintuntunin ng kompanya.”

“Malaking tulong po ito sa mga kagaya kong naghahanap ng trabaho lalo ngayong may COVID na napakahirap maghanap. Hindi lamang ako ang inyong natulungan, kundi ang aking pamilya,” Ronquillo added.

END / Christinne Jeremiah Torrecampo