No. of :

No. of Shares:

Currently viewed by: Marcus Rosit

DOLE opens sugar workers livelihood center in Negros Oriental

DUMAGUETE CITY, Negros Oriental, Sept. 15 (PIA )-- Labor Secretary Bienvenido Laguesma together with Usec Atty. Benjo Benavidez of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) led the formal launching of the P18.3-million Sugar Workers Livelihood and Training Center (SWLTC) on Sept. 14 in Tanjay City, Negros Oriental.

Laguesma said funds for the project were from the forfeited unclaimed or undistributed cash bonus funds under the Social Amelioration Program (SAP) for workers in the sugar industry.

The center sits on a 1,0000-square meter lot after it was donated by the city government.

A total of 30,000 sugar workers are expected to benefit from the livelihood center, said Benavidez.

The center will serve as a venue where the sugar workers will undergo trainings for them to acquire the skills they can use in gaining employment during the off-harvest season.

“Because work in the sugar industry is seasonal, so during the off season, they should have another source of income or livelihood,” added Benavidez.

The law mandates that a portion of the proceeds of sugar production is put into a trust fund for the sugar amelioration program.
“So, over the years it saved, and 80% of it will be given as cash benefits to sugar workers,” the DOLE official said.

The 20% portion of the funds will be for the maternity and death benefits and socio-economic programs for the sugar workers.

Under the socio-economic program, the DOLE has obtained P18.5 million for the construction of the livelihood center as training center for the sugar workers in the province.

“Although the construction of the livelihood hub was initially planned more than a decade ago, it was delayed due to a series of revisions, updates, and changes made to the building plan. Thanks to our beloved Secretary, Beinvenido Laguesma, who approved the funding,” said DSWD-7 Regional Director Lilia Estillore.

The project would help planters, sugar workers, and their dependents in gaining access to technical and livelihood trainings to support the sugar industry and for the workers to acquire new skills that can be used as their source of alternative livelihood.

As workers struggle more during off-farming seasons, Estillore underscored how the center could benefit not only the sugar workers but also their dependents as well as the planters.

“The center will be a place where they could focus for the conduct of their orientations, seminars and trainings about the programs and services of DOLE, TESDA and all other training institutions to help sugar industry workers both in field and mills, the millers and the planters,” she said.  (JCT/PIA7 Negro Oriental with reports from DOLE7)

Labor Secretary Bienvenido Laguesma (center) together with DOLE Usec Atty. Benjo Benavidez (right) with Dumaguete City Mayor Felipe Antonio Remollo (left) to sign a Deed of Usufruct on Sept. 14, 2023 for a new three-storey field office of DOLE to be built inside the Dumaguete City government center in Brgy. Bajumpandan. (PIA Negros Oriental)

About the Author

Jennifer Tilos


Region 7

Feedback / Comment

Get in touch