Domestic workers in Central on Hong Kong Island. Photo: Asia Times
Domestic workers in Central on Hong Kong Island. Photo: Asia Times

A Filipino migrant group in Hong Kong has vowed to stop the implementation of a plan by the Philippine government to require all Filipino workers to be covered by insurance while they work abroad.

All Filipino domestic workers returning to the same employer, or who have moved to another, must also have insurance coverage similar to that required for those leaving to take up their first job abroad, reported.

The plan is under Resolution No 4 of the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA). The two-year insurance coverage cost US$144.

“The new POEA order on mandatory insurance is just another money-making scheme for the already burdened domestic workers that can even cost us our job,” said Dolores Balladares-Pelaez, chairperson of United Filipinos in Hong Kong.

She doubts if employers will pay for the additional insurance. She added it would also become an additional burden for domestic workers who have already been hit by the soaring prices of basic goods in the Philippines.

Under the existing law, the insurance, which can only be secured from an accredited insurer in the Philippines, is required only for first-time domestic workers.

Those who are renewing their contracts or moving to another employer are advised to renew their coverage, either by paying for the premium themselves or requesting their employers to do so.

Labor Attache Nida Romulo, head of the Philippine Overseas Labor Office, said she had no official information about when the new plan be implemented.