Nearly 100,000 workers in Western Visayas have been affected by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, according to the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE-6).

Since January this year, DOLE-6 recorded a total of 99,957 workers who were displaced from various establishments in the region.

John Mandario, DOLE-6 spokesperson, said, 1,937 establishments implemented a flexible working arrangement like reduction of working hours and days affecting 57,239 workers.

Some 1,343 establishments temporarily stopped their operations affecting 33,984 workers while 89 establishments permanently closed affecting 748 workers.

There were also establishments that resorted to retrenchment affecting 7,986 workers.

“These [displaced] workers were from the accommodation, food services, arts, and entertainment and recreation sectors,” Mandario noted.

As a temporary support, DOLE-6 through its Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers (TUPAD), a community-based package of assistance, released P351,721,947.50 to 87,492 qualified beneficiaries between Jan. 1 and Sept. 9 this year.

The displaced workers also benefited from the department’s “Adjustment Measures Program for Affected Workers Due to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)” or CAMP.

CAMP is safety net program implemented last year that offered financial support to affected workers in private establishments that adopted flexible work arrangements or faced temporary closure.

Under CAMP, workers can avail of the one-time cash assistance of P5,000.IMT