Thursday, October 27, 2005

Almost 5,000 Filipino workers in jail overseas

First posted 07:53pm (Mla time) Oct 25, 2005
Agence France-Presse

NEARLY 5,000 Filipino workers have been jailed overseas for various crimes but the government is doing its best to help them, Labor Secretary Patricia Sto. Tomas said Tuesday.

Most are detained in Middle Eastern countries although there are others who have been jailed in Japan, Hong Kong, Brunei and Singapore, she told reporters. Up to eight million Filipinos live abroad, many on short-term employment contracts.

"Legal assistance to [overseas Filipino workers] who have committed offenses in their host countries are provided jointly by the Philippine Embassies in the host countries and by the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration," she said.

Social workers are also providing humanitarian aid, she added. The lure of higher-paying jobs overseas has seen almost eight million Filipinos go abroad with nearly a million finding work overseas every year. #


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