Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) head Labor Attache Saul De Vries held a virtual Exit Conference with the members of the Filipino community in Singapore yesterday as his tour-of-duty in the city-state came to a close. De Vries called for the conference to gather the views of the community on how POLO could further improve its services to overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in Singapore. He noted that POLO will continue to serve OFWs especially those who are encountering problems in their work.

“There are more Filipino workers in Singapore who need help. There are still domestic workers who get abused from time to time. There are still Filipino professionals who get to face work issues every now and then. There are many OFWs who still do not know how to maximize their employment in Singapore. These are the reasons why POLO will remain committed to fulfilling its mandate of protecting the rights and promoting the welfare of OFWs in Singapore,” De Vries noted.

Among the improvement points recommended by the conference attendees include the adoption of OFW tracking system, intensification of OWWA membership campaign, establishment of online payment system for OWWA, implementation of programs facilitating integration of newly-arrived OFWs in Singapore and providing Filipino translations of POLO public advisories. The attendees also took turns in expressing gratitude to POLO for its services to OFWs during De Vries’ tenure.

In response, De Vries thanked the Filipino community for cooperating with POLO by supporting its programs for OFWs in Singapore. He assured them of POLO’s unwavering commitment to remain in the service of OFWs even as he bid them farewell.

De Vries served POLO Singapore for three and half years. He will be replaced by incoming Labor Attache Margarita Eugena Victorino. The Exit Conference was attended by OFW groups, Filipinos in the business community and the media, and select OFW advocates. De Vries was joined by Assistant Labor Attache Macy Monique Maglanque, Welfare Officer Marivic Clarin, SSS Representative Lucille Blesilda Simbol and Pag-IBIG Representative Christian Jan Oliveros. ###