By Leslie Ann Aquino
The labor department expects at least 1.3 million first time jobseekers to benefit yearly from the newly-passed First Time Jobseekers Act.
With the law, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said first-time jobseekers no longer have to be burdened by the high cost of fees when getting pre-employment requirements such as police and barangay clearance, and NBI certificate to mention a few.
“With this, first-time jobseekeers will no longer be burdened,” he said after signing the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of the Republic Act No. 11261, Thursday in Manila.
“They just need to secure a certification from their barangays and they can already avail the benefits,” added Bello.
DOLE Assistant Secretary Joji Aragon said with the measure, first-time jobseekers are expected to save some P2,500 in securing government-issued clearances, such as NBI, police, birth certificates, and transcript of records from government schools and training facilities.
“Those applying for work usually spend for transportation and food while waiting for the issuance of their clearances. Sometimes they even have to stay in a dorm or bedspace for this. So if you will add all these they will save more than one-third of the total cost in applying…the poor sometimes cannot apply because they don’t have the means. For the first time in history, the administration addressed this constraint,” she said.
“While this translates to P3 billion foregone government revenues, the government looks at this investment to bring double or triple fold return in achieving a productive human capital and workforce for the nation,” added Aragon.
“First-time” jobseekers are fresh graduates, out-of-school youths, and others that can secure barangay certification that they are applying for jobs for the first time.
It was last May when President Duterte signed RA 11261, which waives government fees and charges on documents needed by first-time jobseekers for their employment.