By Jam Madrid
NAGA CITY --- For the first time, a job fair for Persons with Disability (PWD) has been included in the list of activities of the Bicol Business Month (BBM) to ensure that physically challenged individuals will have the chance to prove their worth as part of the workforce.
A total of 15 local companies or employers participated in the PWD Job Fair held last Saturday, July 7, at the SM City Event Center here. Out of the 136 applicants, 129 were qualified, and 34 hired on the spot.
The job fair is a collaboration between the Naga City Government, through its Persons with Disability Office (PDAO), the Naga Metro Peso, and the Metro Naga Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MNCCI) which is spearheading the conduct of the Bicol Business Month. It is also being supported by Employment Confederation of the Philippines –Bicol (Ecop Bicol) and the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE)-Camarines Sur.
PDAO Officer-in-Charge Christopher Molin encouraged the business sector to hire at least one percent of their manpower from the PWD sector.
“What we are looking here is not the disability of the person, but their capacity as PWD. The notion is not to hire a PWD just because he is physically challenged. The business sector is actually looking for their ability,” Molin explained.
City Councilor and Chair of the Sangguniang Panlungsod Committee on PWD Elmer Baldemoro added that the job fair is really intended for PWDs and that priority for hiring shall be given to them by employers willing to hire.
“This job fair is very important as this is intended for PWDs and they are assured that priority will be given to them. The employers invited by MNCCI are really those who are willing to hire PWDs,” Baldemoro said.
MNCCI President Ferdinand Sia has stated that there is a law that gives incentives to private companies that employ PWDs and that establishments should be PWD-friendly in terms of mobility.
The activity is also part of the PWD Month Celebration pursuant to Naga City Ordinance No. 2018-028 declaring the month of July as PWD Month.