DOLE-9 hikes Zambo’s SPES allocation to P5M PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 22 February 2012 12:43

The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) regional office 9 has increased to P5 million its counterpart allocation for this year’s Special Program for the Employment of Students (SPES) also known as summer job program of the city government.

This was announced by DOLE-9 officer-in-charge Director Sisinio B. Cano when he paid Mayor Celso Lobregat a courtesy visit yesterday morning in City Hall.

Director Cano, who was regional director of DOLE-10 in Cagayan de Oro City prior to his assignment in Zamboanga, said that the increase in DOLE’s SPES fund for Zamboanga City would also mean a substantial increase in the number of students from high school and college that the city government will hire for special jobs this coming summer.

Meanwhile, City Social Welfare and Development Officer the same time Public Employment Services Office (PESO) Manager Francisco Barredo expressed elation over Cano’s announcement as he expects more and more students will be able to avail of the city’s annual summer job program this year.

He said the city government last year hired a total of 2,900 high school, college and vocational students for summer jobs with an allocation of P9 million, while DOLE-9’s counterpart allocation was only P4 million.

The SPES is mandated under Republic Act No. 9547 otherwise known as “An Act To Help Poor But Deserving Students Pursue Their Education By Encouraging Their Employment During Summer and/or Christmas Vacations…”

Under the program, the city government pays 60% of the students’ daily salary, while the remaining 40% will be paid by DOLE through the so-called education vouchers.

As this developed, Director Cano said that Region 9 is enjoying a robust employment rate of 96% as of last year, which is higher than the national employment rate of 93%.

“We will continue our advocacy on labor relations, social protection program and implementation of the new wage order,” Cano said when asked about his thrusts as OIC of DOLE-9. “What is worth noting is that Region 9 or Zamboanga City in particular remains labor strike-free,” he added. — Vic Larato