The Department of Labor and Employment said yesterday that it has initially released over P1 billion for the payment of financial assistance to almost 240,000 workers in the tourism sector affected by the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.
Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said some 239,713 applications from workers from over 10,000 establishments and groups have been approved.
“As of today, around 239,713 beneficiaries from 10,401 tourism establishments, organizations, and associations are approved for payment, amounting to P1.198 billion,” he said during the virtual awarding of cash assistance to workers affected by Covid-19 in the National Capital Region (NCR) Plus yesterday.
The payment has already been remitted to payment centers.
The financial assistance is part of the Covid-19 Adjustment Measures Program for the Tourism Sector under the Recover as One Act.
The total approved applications are 369,900 from 14,294 establishments, organizations, and associations nationwide.
There were also 13,123 workers in the tourism sector who applied individually and were also approved to receive the one-time cash assistance of P5,000.
“We encourage more affected tourism workers to apply for the assistance, especially those affected by the enhanced community quarantine to Metro Manila, and the provinces of Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal,” he said.
“The labor department, in cooperation with the Department of Tourism, will continuously provide assistance to our beloved workers in the tourism sector. We will never falter despite the increasing odds brought by this pandemic,” Bello added.
So far, the total number of applications received was 761,808 workers from 18,360 establishments.
Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo Puyat reported that tourism sector workers in NCR Plus numbering 67,347 have benefitted from the program, in the amount of P336.74 million.
Cash assistance certificates, amounting to P41.255 million, were also awarded to 8,251 individuals from 35 tourism establishments, groups, and organizations.
“We are hopeful that this financial assistance will provide some relief to our most affected stakeholders and tourism workers during these difficult times,” she said.*PNA