MANILA, Philippines – As President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. wraps up his first year in office, the Department of Migrant Workers (DMW) also wraps up its first year of operations.
Created by the administration of then-president Rodrigo Duterte in December 2021, the department dedicated to the needs of overseas Filipino workers began full operations only in 2023. Duterte had also appointed his own migrant workers secretary, Abdullah Mama-o, but it was under Marcos’ appointment of Susan Ople when the department took off.
The creation of the DMW was not without criticism, with labor groups saying that this may institutionalize the country’s dependence on labor export. But when it was created, some said to give it a chance. How has it fared one year in?
In this episode of At Home sa Abroad: Stories of Overseas Filipinos, Rappler multimedia reporter Michelle Abad speaks to Carmel Abao, a political science professor who is part of the Working Group on Migration of Ateneo de Manila University’s political science department. Erwin Lladoc Jr., who works as a global manager in human resources in Dubai, also joins virtually. Lladoc, originally from Sorsogon, was recently awarded as one of the most outstanding Filipino community leaders in the Gawad Pinoy Awards in the United Arab Emirates.
In Dubai, where around 450,000 Filipinos live and work, Lladoc gives a glimpse of the issues the community faces, and what can be improved in the Philippine government’s service to them. Meanwhile, Abao gives a big-picture evaluation of where Marcos and the DMW should point the direction of its migration governance for its second year.
Watch the video on Rappler at 7 pm (Manila time) on Monday, July 3. – Rappler.com
At Home sa Abroad: Stories of Overseas Filipinos is Rappler’s one-stop video podcast for all things Filipino diaspora.
Watch other At Home sa Abroad episodes:
- How this leadership program helped Fil-Ams connect with their roots
- How is the local economic crisis affecting OFWs?
- Inside a migration reporter’s notebook
- The Filipino diaspora through a migrant’s eyes
- Is exporting Filipino workers a good thing?
- How this Gen Z couple is making their LDR work
- Tales of Martial Law, People Power from migrant Filipinos
- The plight of overseas Filipino women
- Navigating the int’l film industry as a Filipino woman
- After EU decision, what’s next for Filipino seafarers?
- Why do so many Filipinos go abroad to work?
- Filipino mom and daughter champion diversity in US
- Commemorating Independence Day as a Filipino abroad