Regulation of foreign workers sought

The ordinance will cover foreigners who are hired as tour coordinators, leaders, interpreters, translators, or those seasonally employed like chefs, diving instructors, and others. (File photo)

City Councilor Roy Ventura wants to regulate the employment of foreign tourism workers as he observes more and more of them get hired by travel and tour agencies in Puerto Princesa City.

“This is to protect the welfare of our locally accredited tourism workers who are making business legally,” he told Palawan News.

Ventura on Monday filed at the City Council an ordinance requiring foreign tourism workers to pay a one-time P5,000 registration fee and secure an annual occupational permit/license worth P1,500, pursuant to the City’s Revised Revenue Code.

“There is a need to prevent the proliferation of illegal aliens engaging in various establishments in the City without the required permits,” his ordinance’s explanatory note stated.

Ventura said the proposed measure covers foreigners who are tour coordinators, tour leaders, interpreters/translators, or even those seasonally employed such as in the field of culinary services, diving, and air and water sports.

“Some of these aliens profit from facilitating the travel of their own countrymen to visit the City,” he stressed.

The proposed ordinance, meanwhile, listed down the guidelines for their deportment, including conducting their trade without wearing identification card and securing necessary permits.

Even just by presenting themselves without proper grooming and being impolite to tourists can be grounds for their deportation.

They are also not allowed to enter other services contracts without the approval of the registered employer who first commissioned their services.

On top of these guidelines, they will also be governed by the City’s Tourism Code, which likewise laid down various prohibitions.

Violators, on one hand, may suffer fines of P2,500 for first offense and P3,500 plus one-month suspension. For third and subsequent offenses, they will be fined P5,000 and may be imprisoned for three to six months.

Anyone found guilty for the third time or more may be subject to deportation in accordance with the existing laws after payment or fine and/or serving his/her sentence.

The employer of the alien-violator will also be subsidiarily liable for the violation.

Ventura’s proposed ordinance has been referred to the City Council’s tourism committee for further discussion.

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