DOLE suspends labor inspections in December 2019

Sofia Tomacruz
Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III says this is to make way for the proper implementation of the department's inspection programs in 2020

LABOR INSPECTION. The Department of Labor and Employment suspends labor inspections in December 2019. File photo by Jire Carreon/Rappler

MANILA, Philippines – The inspections of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) will be suspended in December to make way for the implementation of the agency’s inspection programs in 2020, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III announced on Sunday, December 1.

In a statement, Bello ordered all DOLE regional directors to suspend all labor inspection activities in their respective regions starting Sunday. Routine inspections will resume “upon issuance of the 2020 General Authority for Labor Inspectors.”

Exempted from the suspension are the following activities:

  • complaint inspections
  • occupational safety and health standards (OSHS) investigations
  • technical safety inspections, including inspection of boilers, pressure vessels, and mechanical and electrical installation
  • inspection of any establishment or industry as directed by Bello

In the meantime, regional directors were ordered to ensure that results of all completed inspection activities are uploaded in the agency’s Management Information System (MIS) before the end of December.

DOLE’s information technology personnel or the MIS regional systems administrators were likewise directed to audit all mobile gadgets used for inspection activities and ensure that 2019 inspection findings are properly uploaded on the agency’s system.

Since September 2019, DOLE has inspected 57,514 establishments covering 2.3 million workers involved in the industries of retail, food and accommodation service, and administrative support.

DOLE said frequent and “notable violations” of labor standards were non-maintenance of employment records in the workplace, non-payment of service incentive leave, non-coverage of workers with social welfare agencies, and non-remittance of social welfare contributions.

The agency said common OSH violations also included absence of OSH personnel in the workplace, non-conduct of workers’ OSH seminar, non-submission of the annual medical report, and lack of health facilities. –

Sofia Tomacruz

Sofia Tomacruz covers foreign affairs and is the lead reporter on the coronavirus pandemic. She also writes stories on the treatment of women and children. Follow her on Twitter via @sofiatomacruz. Email her at