Press Release
January 1, 2020

Statement of Senator Joel Villanueva on the death of an OFW in Kuwait

We offer our deepest condolences to the family of the overseas Filipino worker (OFW) who was killed in Kuwait. We call for justice into her senseless death. It is already bad enough that she has to leave her family behind to work in a foreign land to give her loved ones a better opportunity. We urge our authorities to pursue all available legal means to ensure her family attains justice they rightly deserve.

We are outraged that another family has to grieve, and we question the implementation of the Kuwaiti bilateral agreement signed last 2018 that was suppose to protect our workers in Kuwait. We all thought that when the government entered into the bilateral labor agreement, our workers there would have better protection against all forms of abuse, effectively stopping the senseless deaths of our overseas Filipino workers at the hands of their employers. The labor department should reach out to their counterparts in Kuwait and see how justice may be achieved for our kababayan and their bereaved family.

We hope that the labor department would continue to make representations with the Kuwaiti Ministry of Labor and work on a system to educate employers on the rights of their household service workers.

The death of our OFW in Kuwait highlights the need to pursue a key measure that will help our distressed compatriots abroad. We are committed to shepherd the passage of Senate Bill No.1233, which seeks to further strengthen and expand the Legal Assistance Fund. The bill, which is on second reading, will strengthen the legal assistance provided for our kababayan abroad, and ensure that justice is pursued for our OFWs and overseas-based Filipinos.

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