By Ferdinand Patinio

DOLE Bureau of Workers with Special Concerns director Ahmma Charisma Lobrin-Satumba (Screengrab from Laging Handa briefing)

MANILA – The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) on Friday expressed concern over the low number of domestic workers (kasambahay) in the country who have employment contracts.

“Out of 1.4 million kasambahays (househelps), merely 2.5 percent have employment contract. This is around 35,000 only while 1.36 million have no written employment contracts,” said Director Ahmma Charisma Lobrin-Satumba, DOLE Bureau of Workers with Special Concerns (BWSC), in a Laging Handa briefing on Friday.

She added that there is also a low number of domestic workers that have contributions to the Social Security System (SSS), Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth), and Home Development Mutual Fund (Pag-Ibig).

“It is also a concern to us the low coverage among social protection agencies. We saw that only 8.3 percent of the 1.4 million are covered,” she said.

The labor official said they are keen on intensifying the campaign for compliance with Republic Act 10361 or the Kasambahay Law.

“We will be intensifying our advocacy so that both the employers and kasambahays will be aware of these,” she said.

Section 11 of the law states that “an employment contract should be executed between the domestic worker and the employer before the commencement of the service”.

The law also provides that a domestic worker, who has rendered at least one month of service, shall be covered by SSS, PhilHealth, and Pag-Ibig with the premium contributions to be shouldered by the employer.

It was signed in July 2012 by former president Benigno Aquino III and took effect in June 2013. (PNA)