Report: ‘PH is now a human trafficking site’

  • Several visa-less Vietnamese workers were found by the Bureau of Immigration
  • These workers have been working blue collar jobs in the country for three years
  • They were sent back home and were blacklisted for overstaying

The Bureau of Immigration (BI) found several Vietnamese workers in the country whose visas have already expired for three years.

Inquirer revealed in its story that these 69 workers were overstaying in the Philippines; working in the provinces of Cagayan, Pangasinan, Bataan, Zambales, Batangas and Leyte.

“We interviewed the Vietnamese nationals. We were surprised that we are not just a source of trafficking victims, but we are also becoming a destination,” Spokesperson Tonette Mangrobang said in the story.

The BI discovered that these foreigners have been lured to work in the Philippines for blue collar jobs such domestic helpers, porters or carpenters. They are paid P5,000 which is way below the standard minimum wage.

Mangrobang said the type of employment of these Viet nationals are suspicious.

“For a foreigner, this is the first time that we heard that they are employed in these jobs, usually we encounter them as owners, businessmen, investors. Not as laborers,” she said.

Last Sunday, the BI allowed the Vietnamese nationals to fly home but they are blacklisted from the Philippines until they fine the overstaying charge.

The Philippines, for the longest time, have been a known source of trafficked persons in the world, but the country has improved its standing based on the United States’ Trafficking in Persons (TIP) report.

Since 2001, the country has been at the Tier 2 of the report’s 3-tier ranking. Tier 2 means that a country is pushing for efforts to combat trafficking but has not been fully compliant with the standard set.

In the latest TIP report released last month, the country now belongs to Tier 1 where other nations that “fully meet” the standards against human trafficking are part of.

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