Some 177 beneficiaries were employed through the Tulong Panghanapbuhay para sa Displaced/Disadvantaged Workers (TUPAD) of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) for a clean-up drive at the Laguna de Bay following the onslaught of the recent typhoons.

Muntinlupa City, which shares a border of the Philippines’ largest lake, was overcrowded with water lilies and had been preventing the local fishermen residing near the area to earn a living.

In response, the City Government of Muntinlupa through its Public Employment Service Office (PESO) and DOLE-NCR MUNTAPARLAS Field Office hired the displaced worker-beneficiaries from Barangays Putatan and Bayanan for 14 days at four (4) hours per day beginning November 27, 2020 to clean some parts of the lake.

“The residences of the TUPAD beneficiaries employed are near Baywalk or Laguna Lake. In lieu of the recent Typhoon Rolly and Typhoon Ullysses, this clean-up drive would be able to fulfill the wish of our local fishermen in the area. They hoped to be able to clean a part of Laguna de Bay that deters the smooth flow of the waterways and hinders the movement of the fishermen boats. This initiative would allow the fishermen to bounce back smoothly in their respective work,” said Zaza Garcia Platil, TUPAD Focal Person from PESO Muntinlupa.

Before the actual clean-up drive, Platil said that the beneficiaries attended first a basic orientation on safety and health with provision of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) that includes a hat, TUPAD long sleeve shirts, and a facemask. They were also reminded to strictly observe the physical distancing measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

To assist the TUPAD workers in cleaning the lake, the City Lake Management Office of Muntinlupa City also provided boats and other equipment.

The City Government of Muntinlupa’s budget for the 177 TUPAD workers amounted to P1,375,998.00, which covered the beneficiaries’ wages, enrollment to group micro insurance, PPEs, and administrative cost.

Said beneficiaries will claim their assistance through DOLE’s money remittance partner after they have completed the required work days.

END / Hershey Aquino with report from Christinne Jeremiah Torrecampo and Zaza Garcia Platil