Activists walk for Mary Jane on mother’s day

May. 10, 2015

DAVAO CITY – Activists held a Mother’s Day walk for overseas Filipino worker Mary Jane Veloso calling for her immediate repatriation from Indonesia.

Gabriela Women’s Partylist Representative Emmi de Jesus blamed the government’s Labor Export Policy for thousands of Filipinos working abroad who gets separated from their families.

“Mary Jane is not the only mother who is in prison and is separated from her family because of lack of justice and support from the government. Half of the 6,000 Filipinos who leave the country everyday to work abroad are women who will be welcoming Mother’s Day with pain because of the government’s Labor Export Policy who is desperate for their remittance,” said De Jesus during the walk around Quezon Memorial Circle.

The Gabriela solon revealed that she and fellow GWP lawmaker Luz Ilagan filed House Resolution 2048 last week to coax the Department of Foreign Affairs to collect prompt information on about 90 death row convicts around the world in order to prevent tardy legal assistance to OFWs that left Veloso to her own devices and got her sentenced for the death penalty.

Mothers of other jailed OFWs who attended the gathering supported the Gabriela resolution that would also account for the Legal Assistance Fund and find out why diplomatic staff and their office procedures leave OFWs who seek their help largely unattended.

De Jesus recalled that in a recent visit of the House Committee on OFW Concerns to Hong Kong, she witnessed how Filipino embassy staff pushed and shoved domestic workers, majority of whom are mothers, like cattle, while they were lining up for Certificates of Employment. OFWs want these certificates abolished.

De Jesus said labor officials in the country should treat OFW with dignity and respect and provide them prompt service commensurate to the taxes and bloated fees they are forced to pay.

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