The Department of Migrant Workers (DMW) Secretary Susan “Toots” V. Ople recently appointed a group of officials to key positions within the department. Secretary Ople characterized the appointees as a combination of experienced government personnel and fresh talent, all united in their dedication to serving Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs).
Furthermore, the DMW has introduced the One Repatriation Command Center (ORCC) for the benefit of OFWs. This initiative aims to provide a centralized and efficient support system for repatriation efforts.
These new officials and the DMW office Department of Migrant Workers collectively aspire to create a safe and nurturing environment for OFWs and their families. Their objective is to address the unique challenges faced by OFWs and ensure their well-being throughout their overseas employment.
List of Appointed Officers of the Department of Migrant Workers
Here’s the official list of officers of the DMW office:
- Susan “Toots” V. Ople holds the position of Secretary.
- Bernard P. Olalia serves as the Undersecretary for Licensing and Adjudication Services.
- Hans Leo J. Cacdac is the Undersecretary for Welfare and Foreign Employment.
- Patricia Yvonne M. Caunan is appointed as the Undersecretary for Policy and International Cooperation.
- Maria Anthonette C. Velasco-Allones serves as the Undersecretary for Finance and Internal Affairs.
- Arnell A. Ignacio is appointed as the Administrator of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration.
- Jerome A. Alcantara serves as the Assistant Secretary for Land-based Services and concurrently holds the position of Chief of Staff in the Office of the Secretary.
- Levinson C. Alcantara is appointed as the Assistant Secretary for Pre-employment Services.
- Felicitas Q. Bay serves as the Assistant Secretary for Migrant Workers Welfare Services.
- Francis Ron C. de Guzman holds the position of Assistant Secretary for Licensing and Adjudication Services.
- Jerome T. Pampolina is appointed as the Assistant Secretary for Sea-based Services.
- Violeta D. Illescas serves as the Assistant Secretary for Internal Management and Administration.
Senior Officials and their Wealth of Experience
- Atty. Bernard P. Olalia: He has been named as DMW Undersecretary for Licensing and Adjudication Services. He will also serve as the Officer-in-Charge (OIC) of the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) until the DMW is fully formed.
- Atty. Hans Leo J. Cacdac: He will take over as the Undersecretary for Welfare and Foreign Employment. He will be in charge of the department’s Aksyon Fund, which will be used to assist distressed Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) from various nations.
- Ms. Maria Anthonette Velasco-Allones: She is currently serving as the Undersecretary for Finance and Internal Affairs at the DMW. She has previously worked in the government for 31 years and held various positions, including being a former Assistant Secretary at the Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE) under the Arroyo administration.
- Attorney Patricia Yvonne M. Caunan: She has joined the DMW as Undersecretary for Policy and International Cooperation. Prior to her appointment, she headed a successful law firm specializing in labor, civil, administrative, and criminal matters. She has been an advocate for migrant workers’ rights and has provided free legal assistance and advice in various settings.
- Ignacio: Although it is not clear from the information provided who Ignacio is, he previously served as Deputy Administrator of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA). He has experience as an administrator with OWWA and is familiar with the difficulties faced by migrant workers.
- Venecio Legaspi: He is a former Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW) who worked for 29 years in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. He will be joining the DMW as Assistant Secretary for Reintegration. Legaspi achieved career success during his time as an OFW and retired as a vice-president of a well-known Saudi bank in Jeddah.
These appointments indicate that the DMW is taking steps to address the needs and concerns of Filipino migrant workers, both in terms of licensing and adjudication services, welfare and foreign employment, policy and international cooperation, and reintegration support.
Oath-Taking Ceremony of Newly Appointed DMW Officers
The officers of the DMW department, short for Department of Migrant Workers, have made it their primary objective to safeguard and uphold the rights of Filipino migrant workers. This development is extremely encouraging for all Filipinos employed overseas, as the establishment of this dedicated DMW office signifies a commitment to prioritize their welfare.
The recent announcement regarding the appointed officials of the DMW showcases a remarkable group of individuals. With their extensive expertise and experience, they bring forth a wealth of knowledge that will prove invaluable in the department’s mission to safeguard the interests of migrant workers, both within the Philippines and beyond its borders. We extend our best wishes to these officials as they embark on their new roles.
By diligently fulfilling their responsibilities, the officers of the DMW department will play a crucial role in advocating for the rights of Filipino migrant workers. Their efforts will undoubtedly contribute to creating a safer and more secure environment for these individuals, ensuring their well-being and protecting their rights. This development represents a significant step forward in prioritizing the welfare of Filipino migrant workers, and we commend the DMW for its commitment to this cause.