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Magna Carta of Filipino Seafarers pushed in House

Magna Carta of Filipino Seafarers pushed in House
RAFFY AYENG August 02, 2019

Party-list congressmen Eric Go Yap, Jocelyn Pua Tulfo and Rowena Niña Taduran have filed House Bill (HB) 3282, which pushes a Magna Carta of Filipino Seafarers.

“We recognize that our seafarers experience varying working conditions. Some of [these conditions] are abusive and against labor standards,” Yap explained, speaking for his two colleagues from the Anti-Crime and Terrorism Community Involvement and Support (ACT-CIS).

Under the proposed measure, responsible agencies are mandated to watch out for the proper processing before, during and after the deployment of Filipino seafarers to ensure their safety and the employers to guarantee fair working conditions.

“With ACT-CIS partylist in Congress, we will continue to safeguard the rights of the Filipino people. For our seafarers, it is only warranted to lay their rights through a Magna Carta,” the Yap said.

His party-list group expressed its commitment to follow through with the passage of the bill to ensure the protection of and self-determination for Filipino seafarers.

The proposal is pending at the House Committee on Overseas Workers Affairs.

In 2018, Sen. Emmanuel Joel Villanueva, who heads the Senate Committee on Labor, Employment and Human Resources Development, filed the Senate version of HB 3282, Senate Bill (SB) 314 or the Magna Carta of Filipino Seafarers bill, with Senators Juan Edgardo Angara Jr., Loren Legarda and Joseph Victor Ejercito as co-authors.
SB 314 aims to institute mechanisms to protect our country’s seafarers’ rights, provide them compulsory benefits and enforce standards set by international laws.

Other proposed laws were filed at the Senate, including SB 429 on the “National Seafarers’ Commission,” a measure that aims to create a centralized agency directly involved in promoting assistance to all seamen and seawomen; and SB 881 or the “Pilipinong Marino Act,” which gives greater protection for Filipino sea-based migrant workers through the creation of a National Seafarers Administration.