Lake Sebu, South Cotabato- The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) 12 through its South Cotabato Field Office (DOLE-SCFO) conducted an orientation on Registration of Workers’ Association to beneficiaries of Project IPEACE (Indigenous people Empowered as Agripreneurs towards a Collective End) and Project TALA (TESDA Alay ay Liwanag at Asenso) who were former rebels and Indigenous Peoples at Sitio Blit, this municipality, South Cotabato on 29 January 2021.

The said orientation done during the graduation of one hundred twenty-five (125) residents of Sitio Blit from Projects IPEACE and TALA were spearheaded by DOLE-SCFO Senior LEO Engr. Louie Esparagoza and RWA Focal Person Edgar Hapitan. The orientation aims to capacitate technical and skills graduates with the knowledge on creating a workers’ group with DOLE accredited legal personality. Further, this will form-part in the association’s eligibility in the application for DOLE livelihood assistance.

100 individuals were trained on photovoltaic systems installation while 25 beneficiaries finished their training on organic fertilizer production. The said ceremony was graced by no less than the TESDA Director General Secretary Isidro Lapeña and TESDA XII Regional Director Rafael Abrogar II.

“We look forward in helping our techvoc-skills graduates especially the IPs in managing their own workers’ association so we could integrate our livelihood assistance to their community,” said ARD/SCFO Head Arlene Bisnon.

Under PD 442 of the Labor Code of the Philippines, as amended, the DOLE is mandated to process the application of registration of workers’ association organized for the mutual aid and protection of its members or for other legitimate purposes except collective bargaining in order for them to acquire legal personality.

“Our convergence with the other members of ELCAC is important in our strategy to reach multi-sectoral groups in the grassroot communities like Sitio Blit in Lake Sebu,” added ARD Bisnon.

The National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) was created by virtue of Executive Order No. 70 to synchronize the utilization of the government’s instrumentalities of power with the capabilities of private sector stakeholders to finally end the 50-year long deceit, lies and atrocities committed by the communist terrorists against the people. End/CDGamboa/LMEsparagoza