Firms recruiting Pinoys for US, Australia shut

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MANILA, Philippines—The Philippine Overseas Employment Agency (POEA) has closed down two agencies that continued to engage in recruiting Filipinos for work in Australia and the United States even after their licenses had been revoked because of illegal practices.

POEA chief Hans Cacdac said the agency closed down Northwest Placement Inc. in Manila and Reagent Manpower Services Inc. in Quezon City for various violations of recruitment rules.

Vice President Jejomar Binay, as head of the Presidential Task Force on Anti-Illegal Recruitment (PTFAIR), joined the POEA Anti-Illegal Recruitment Team in padlocking Northwest Placement’s office.

“This enforcement effort of the POEA and the Office of the Vice President underscores the importance of punishing recruitment violators and upholding the rule of law. And we will not rest,” Cacdac said.

He said the POEA ordered Northwest’s closure after it discovered that the agency still engaged in the recruitment and placement of workers for overseas employment even after its license was cancelled.

Cacdac said the agency’s permit was cancelled on April 25 after the POEA found out that it was charging excessive placement fees.

In the course of the investigation of the agency, it was also discovered that Northwest was still recruiting housekeepers to work in the US, Cacdac said.

Under POEA rules and regulations, an order of cancellation “is immediately executory,” he added.

Cacdac said the POEA Anti-Illegal Recruitment Branch also closed down Reagent Manpower Services for offering nonexistent work in Australia.

He said the agency was initially put on preventive suspension on Feb. 28 but surveillance by POEA officers showed it continued to entertain applications for the position of fruit pickers in Australia.

“Hence, a similar closure order was issued by the POEA,” Cacdac said.

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