MANILA – Rep. Weslie Gatchalian recently passed a bill that aims to include war risk provisions in all insurance policies of Filipinos who are working overseas.
House Bill 4924, which amends Republic Act 8042, otherwise known as Migrant Overseas Workers Act of 1995, aims to include “war risk, invasion, insurrection, revolution, military coup and terrorism” in the compulsory insurance coverage for hired overseas Filipino workers (OFW) who are looking for employment opportunities abroad.
According to Gatchalian, “political and civil unrest dominates the global politics such as the Arab Spring, political turmoil’s in Libya, Syria and Iraq that swept the Arab nations and Eastern Europe and even the acts of terrorism by some fundamentalist groups such as the ISIS.”
“In the midst of this unrest are our OFWs who are caught in the crossfire,” Gatchalian added.
He also said that the government current efforts on securing OFWs from war-affected areas are only limited to evacuation and repatriation.
“Our OFWs are not yet financially protected for all the risk they encounter in countries under civil or political unrest,” Gatchalian noted. “Our existing compulsory insurance is limited to ordinary perils such as accidental death, natural death or disablement.”
Once enacted into law, the bill will also assure that the insurance coverage will be for the entire duration of the worker’s employment contract at no cost.