In commemoration of International Labor Day, Philippine Ambassador to UAE Hjayceelyn M. Quintana paid a visit to a Tadbeer Center in Abu Dhabi and engaged with the managers and staff. The Ambassador said that the UAE government-sanctioned recruitment/placement agencies called Tadbeers are the Embassy’s new partners in protecting the rights of Filipino household service workers (HSWs).
Deployment of domestic workers from the Philippines was suspended in 2014. Since she assumed office in 2018, Ambassador Quintana actively pushed for the resumption of the deployment of workers in this vulnerable category through a legal and regular pathway that was eventually agreed upon between the Philippines and the UAE last 2 March 2021 in Manila.
The Tadbeer Centers play an important role in the implementation of this agreement as they will be the only channel for prospective employer-households in the UAE wishing to hire Filipino HSWs in 19 categories (ranging from driver to nanny), under strict regulation by UAE’s Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MOHRE).
According to Amb. Quintana, “After seven years, we have successfully resumed the regular and legal deployment of Filipino domestic workers to the UAE. Having been part of the negotiations, I have seen how hard we all worked for this, therefore I am sure that both countries will remain vigilant in ensuring the protection of Filipino workers and their Emirati employers against unscrupulous people intent on violating the rules and trampling on the worker’s rights for profit.”
During the visit, which was facilitated by MOHRE, Mr. Mostafa Bakhit, Customer Service Manager of the Tadbeer Center at the World Trade Center Mall in Abu Dhabi responded to the Ambassador’s in-depth queries on the procedures in place for the protection of workers such as living quarters arrangements and training prior to deployment, as well as grievance settlement mechanisms. She expressed hope that the Tadbeer Centers will be the Embassy’s close partners in managing Filipino HSWs’ concerns, with professionalism and compassion.
“My visit to this Tadbeer Center aims to demonstrate that both the Philippines and the UAE are working hand in hand to protect domestic workers’ rights and to guarantee dignity of labor.” said Amb. Quintana. She added that while procedures and timelines for deployment will necessarily be affected by COVID-19 restrictions in both the Philippines and the UAE, the two sides are keen to see this deployment succeed.
Accompanying the Ambassador during the visit were Labor Attache Manuel Dimaano, Consul General Marford Angeles, and Consul Cynthia Pelayo.