The other day I was in POEA to secure my Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC). I asked the Security Officer on duty where I was supposed to go to have this certificate. I was told to go straight ahead to a big and enclosed office inside the main building. It was still early in the morning (around 8 am) but the room was very crowded with OFW’s trying to get the same paper for clearance before they leave the country. Fortunately, the room is air conditioned and has many seats available. There was even a booth that offers fast service with an option for home delivery of the certificate at an added fee which I believe is reasonable enough if compared to the time you need to spend to queue and wait for your number to be called. The certificate reached our home as promised, within 24 hours…
This is totally the opposite scenario when last year I tried securing my certificate as first time OFW. We were asked to sit outside the building. Yes, it was covered but the summer sun makes it scorchingly hot and unfortunately, no electric fans were available. We had to sit there for more than 2 hours because 1.) we had to be there early so we can be the first in line and since they have cut-off in number of applications to be processed per day you have to be there before 8 am 2.) there was a flag ceremony that day so we had to wait before we were allowed entry inside the building.
Upstairs, there was a waiting area (again covered but no airconditioning unit available). There was a big industrial fan but is not oscillating so only those few fortunate applicants in front of the fan do not feel the heat which is actually suffocating because of the enclosed space. The seats in that room were dilapidated and ready to retire any time. After another 1.5 hours of waiting, my number was finally called to be evaluated then I had to attend the PDOS and all other requirements prior to payment.
What am I trying to point out in these 2 scenarios which is basically 12 months apart? I personally feel there was a sort of discrimination in the application process. If this Government agency can provide a nice, air conditioned room with sufficient seats available then why not give this “privilege” to all applicants? Why give “special treatment” to returning OFW’s only?
I have no objections whatsoever about this “privilege”, as I feel we OFW’s should be given due treatment considering the major contribution of our remittances to the country’s economy. However, I feel this standard should be given to all citizens without any questions or hesitations. I hope my assumption about discrimination in this office is wrong but true or not, I definitely feel the need to improve our Civil service.
We’ve heard about Alec Baldwin’s unfavorable remark about Filipinas being tagged as mail-order brides in David Letterman’s show.
Recently, Chip Tsao branded the Philippines as a Nation of Servants.
In an episode of Desperate Housewives, Teri Hatcher questioned the credibility of Filipino Doctors..
Then everyday, somewhere in the world, OFW’s and Filipino Immigrants are working their ass out to avoid discrimination in the workplace or thecommunity and to prove to the world that Filipinos are world-class and should not be belittled.
The list gets longer and longer….
Everytime we hear such stories, we Filipinos tend to unite and speak out to rebuke those negative remarks or impressions. We are doing all our damn best(est to the highest level) so that one day, the world will recognize the Philippines as a great nation with exceptional citizens.
Isn’t it ironic that while other Filipinos are doing all these efforts to prove our detractors wrong, here comes a new scandal that would again, tarnish the reputation of Filipinas and sadly, the perpetrators are Filipinos themselves… It is about the Sex Video of Hayden Kho and the ladies- Katrina Halili and Maricar Reyes. The culprit who spread out the video on the internet is unknown yet but there were speculations that it is someone close to the Pervert Doctor. Yes, porn is everywhere but instances such as these adds up to the negative impression of us Filipinos.
Instead of exerting efforts to spread out videos such as these which would definitely destroy the reputation of the people involved, why not use our energy and resources to spread to the world the accomplishments of Filipinos such as Manny Pacquiao and Charice Pempengco. Surely their videos will not cost PHP 2 Million (as what the price of the Sex scandal video was reported to have been sold) but it’s about time we bring back our dignity and respect so we Filipinos can be important in the eyes of the world…