Carrying out its share in providing meaningful work experience, the Employees Compensation Commission has recently employed fifty (50) students whose parents were enrolled under the Katulong and Gabay ng Manggagawang May Kapansanan (KaGabay) Program of the ECC to work under the Special Program of Employment for Students (SPES).

“The SPES, as an employment bridging program, will provide the students with the real picture of how working life is and will serve as a training ground for them to build their confidence and self-discipline. Aside from that, they will also have salaries, in exchange for the work they have done, which they can use to pay for their tuition or to contribute to the family income,” ECC Executive Director Stella Zipagan-Banawis explained.

“This is also another means of assistance extended by the ECC to our persons with work-related, or PWRDs”, she added.

Composed of 27 males and 23 females, the students, whose age ranges from 15-23 years old, are assigned in the ECC Central Office, Occupational Safety and Health Center, several branches of Social Security System, local government units and in various offices of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).

As provided for under Republic Act No. 9547, or otherwise known as the “Special Program of Employment of Students”, this program is intended to help poor but deserving students and out-of-school youth to pursue their education through employment on summer vacations, while those enrolled in tertiary, vocational, or technical education may be employed any time of the year. The employment period is from twenty (20) to fifty-two (52) working days.

Also under this program, employers are only required to pay sixty (60) percent of the prevailing minimum wage while the remaining forty (40) percent is to be paid by the Department of Labor and Employment, in the form of education vouchers.