A bill seeking to provide a 20-percent discount for indigent job applicants on government document charges was filed by Sen. Lito Lapid.

In its explanatory note, Senate Bill No. (SBN) 2382 or the “Indigent Job Applicants Discount Act” aims to assist poor job applicants to “facilitate easy access to decent jobs that both secure income and the necessary entitlements for them.”

The measure seeks a 20-percent discount for document fees that job seeker looking for work locally or abroad will pay.

The document fees covered by this bill are as follows:

  1. Clearance from the barangay where the applicant resides
  2. Clearance from the National Bureau of Investigation
  3. Clearance from the Philippine National Police
  4. Medical certificate for local employment from any government hospital licensed by the Department of Health (DOH), and medical certificate for foreign employment from any DOH-accredited medical facility for Filipino overseas workers
  5. Certificate of marriage from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA)
  6. Certificate of live birth from PSA
  7. Transcript of Records from the State Universities and Colleges of the applicant;
  8. Tax Identification Number
  9. Certificate of Good Moral Character from the State Universities and Colleges of the applicant
  10. Other documentary requirements issued by the government may be required by employers from indigent job applicants.

Lapid urged his colleagues at the Senate to pass the bill because he believed that a family could improve its quality of life if one of them had a job. 

Nais po nating bigyan ng patas na oportunidad ang ating mga naghihikahos na kababayan para madaling makahanap ng trabaho. Pero hindi mangyayari ito kung papasanin pa nila ang nagtataasang singil ng mga ahensya ng ating pamahalaan bilang bayad sa mga certificates, clearances, at iba pa,” he added.

(We would like to give an equal opportunity for our citizens to find jobs easily. However, this wouldn’t happen if they were burdened with paying the increasing agency fees of our government just to get certificates, clearances, etc.)

Its counterpart measure, House Bill No.8008, or the “Kabalikat Sa Hanapbuhay Act” already passed the third and final reading in May last year and was refiled by Sen. Jinggoy Estrada under SBN 2456 on September 27. 

PSA estimated that 2.27 million Filipinos are unemployed as of July 2023.  Xander Lauren Cipriano