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SOURCE: Press and Public Affairs Bureau

House approves bill on discounted waived fees on pre-employment requirements for indigent jobseekers
22 May 2023 06:30:47 PM

THE House of Representatives on Monday gave the final nod on a measure
that seeks to aid indigent jobseekers in their pursuit of gainful
employment by granting them discounted or waived fees on
pre-employment requirements such as National Bureau of Investigation
(NBI) and police clearances.

With an overwhelming 270 votes, the House members approved on third and final reading House Bill (HB) No. 8008 or the “Kabalikat sa Hanapbuhay Act,” which seeks
to provide either a 20% discount on fees or completely waived payment
on employment documents issued by government agencies for qualified
indigent job hunters.

“The first big hurdle for indigent job seekers is the payment of fees
for their employment requirements. If the government cannot aid them
in hurdling the first obstacle to gainful employment, then I see a
failure in public service,” Speaker Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez

“It is within the government’s power to reduce or waive these fees to
give our indigent citizens a head start in landing a job, given that
these documentary employment requirements are issued by government
agencies themselves. It is my belief that doing this will greatly help
many of our citizens,” he added.

Some principal authors of the measure are Reps. Mikee Romero, Oscar G.
Malapitan, Marissa “Del Mar” Magsino, Lani Mercado Revilla, Gus
Tambunting, Marcelino Libanan, Manuel Jose M. Dalipe, and others.

Under HB 8008, a 20% discount is granted to qualified indigent
jobseekers applying for the following documentary requirements:

- Barangay Clearance.
- NBI Clearance.
- Police Clearance.
- Medical Certificate from any government hospital.
- Medical Certificate for foreign employment from any DOH-accredited
medical facility for overseas workers and seafarers.
- Marriage Certificate from the PSA.
- Birth Certificate from the PSA.
- National Certificate and Certificate of Competency (COC) from TESDA.
- Certificate of Civil Service Eligibility from the CSC.
- Other documentary requirements issued by the government that may be
required by employers from indigent job seekers as determined and
approved by the Inter-Agency Coordinating and Monitoring Committee
established in this Act.

Section 5 of the measure waives the fees and charges for the following
pre-employment documents and cards:

- Tax Identification Number from the Bureau of Internal Revenue.
- Transcript of Records, Transfer Credentials, Authenticated Copy of
Diploma, and Certificate of Good Moral Character from the State
Universities and Colleges, and Local Universities and Colleges of the
job seeker.

“The indigent job seeker may avail of the privileges of waived or
discounted fees under this Act only once every six (6) months from
each government agency,” HB 8008 read.

The measure also mandates the creation of an Interagency Coordinating
and Monitoring Committee headed by the Secretary of Labor and
Employment as Chairperson and the Secretary of Interior and Local
Government as Vice Chairperson, with members from different agencies
such as the Department of Migrant Workers, PSA, PNP, NBI, DOH and

The measure also defined an indigent jobseeker as “a person who is
seeking gainful employment and has no visible means of income or whose
income falls below the official poverty threshold, as identified by
the National Economic and Development Authority and/or cannot afford
in a sustained manner to provide their minimum basic needs of food,
health, education, housing and other essential amenities of life.”

“The PSA, based on the criteria set under the Community-Based
Monitoring System as established under Republic Act No. 11315,
otherwise known as the Community-Based Monitoring System Act, shall
validate the list of indigent households in the Listahanan of the
DSWD,” it said.

“The Local Social Welfare Development Officer (LSWDO) of the
city/municipality or any equivalent unit of the municipality where the
indigent job seeker resides is authorized to issue a Certificate of
Indigency based on the latest CBMS data … Such certification shall be
free of charge,” the bill continued.

Furthermore, an indigent job seeker whose household is enrolled under
the seven-year period “Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps),”
shall be automatically considered an “indigent” and eligible to avail
of the privileges mandated. (END)