ED Banawis: Let us respect and love each other

‘Let us respect and love each other. Kung walang love, at least may respeto. Respect is very important. ‘

These are the last words of reminders and inspiration shared by Executive Director Stella Zipagan-Banawis during the tribute for her retirement at the Employees’ Compensation Commission’s activity area on August 31, 2022.

Director Banawis rendered more than 38 years in the public service, 11 years of which were at the ECC.

ED Banawis’ journey in the government started in 1984 as an Overseas Employment Officer at the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA). She rose from the ranks to become the Acting Deputy Executive Director V (Deputy Administrator) in 2011 at the POEA.

During her 27 years of service with the POEA, she performed numerous functions such as managing the agency’s mandate to issue licenses to recruitment agencies, reviewing of cases involving workers and employers and developing policies and systems on overseas employment, among others.

In 2011, she was detailed to ECC as its Officer-in-Charge Deputy Executive Director pursuant to Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Administrative Order 353.

In February 2013, she was appointed as the 8th ECC’s Executive Director and a member of the ECC Board of Commissioners until her retirement day.

Throughout her 11 years of service with ECC, ED Banawis managed the implementation of the ECC’s mandates. She relentlessly initiated more than 100 policies which focused on enhancing, expanding and equalizing ECP benefits and services for workers in the public and the private sectors who suffered from work-related sickness, injury, death. Most remarkable of which are as follows: Expanding the coverage of the ECP to self-employed members of the SSS; Prescribing the grant of carer’s allowance in the public sector and eventually making it at par with the private sector; Enhancing the grant of EC Funeral benefit to P30,000; Equalizing the schedule of reimbursement rates for laboratory, x-ray and other diagnostic examination; Establishing the grant of livelihood starter kit and complementary kit to persons with work-related disabilities (PWRDs); and compensability of work-related CoVID-19.

During her tenure, ECC expanded its jurisdiction by establishing additional 12 regional extension units nationwide. To ensure loyalty and commitment from the regional officers, ED Stella pushed for the regularization of said officers who are now enjoying security of tenure.

We could go on and on extolling the accomplishment of ED Stella. But one thing is for sure, she mustered all her energies in showing her love and respect to our persons with work-related disabilities by doing what she had to do to give nothing but the very best to all our stakeholders.

Maraming salamat ED Stella! May God bless you in your future endeavors.