Seamen may file complaints at sea
MANILA, Philippines—Filipino seafarers may file work-related complaints even while aboard ocean-going vessels, according to the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA).
POEA Administrator Hans Leo Cacdac said Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz had issued Department Order No. 127 directing the opening of communication lines between Filipino sailors and the POEA to strengthen the modes of conciliation and mediation of labor disputes in the maritime industry.
“The department order effectively aligns with Regulation 5.1.5 of the Maritime Labor Convention 2006 of the International Labor Organization which requires the mandatory implementation of onboard complaints procedure for the fair, effective and expeditious handling of seafarer complaints alleging breaches of the requirements of the said convention, including labor and employment rights of seafarers,” Cacdac said.
Aggrieved seafarers usually filed complaints only upon their return to the country, the POEA said.
But Cacdac said a seafarer could now communicate to the POEA an onboard complaint either through postal mail addressed to the POEA administrator, Blas F. Ople Building corner Edsa and Ortigas Ave., Mandaluyong City, Philippines 1501; through e-mail addressed to firstname.lastname@example.org, or by calling the office at tel. nos. 8336992, 5516641 and 5511560.
Cacdac said the POEA would provide the seafarer with impartial advice on the complaint and assist him in going through the complaint procedures.
He gave assurance that all information gathered during consultation would be kept in strict confidence and evaluated in accordance with existing rules and regulations governing the employment of seafarers and POEA standard terms and conditions.
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