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With ongoing consultations, the SIFI-RSS IACAP or the Integrated ARBO Child Labor and PPE Program prepares the launching of personal protective equipment (PPE) for sugar farmworkers.

The PPE Technical Working Group composed of the Sugar Industry Foundation, Inc., Carlos Hilado Memorial State University, Silay-Magalona (SIMAG) Foundation, and the Department of Labor and Employment Negros Occidental Field Office (DOLE NOFO), is slowly progressing toward the distribution of PPE sets to sugar farm workers.

The PPE Apparel and Accessories are divided into three (3) work types – manual harvest, chemical spray, and fertilizer application. These were presented to the Sugar Regulatory Administration (SRA) in a recent meeting. The SRA conveyed positive inputs for the program and signified interest to purchase PPE sets for the block farms in the Visayas to be distributed on September. A memorandum of agreement will soon be forged between SRA and the PPE TWG.

The program was also presented by SIFI to the Occupational Safety and Health Center (OSHC) Region 6. SIFI and CHMSU are working together with OSHC for the certification of the PPE.

In this program, 30 individuals (mostly women) from different ARBOs were trained by CHMSU in collaboration with SIMAG to sew PPE sets. Currently, a total of 72 PPE sets (24 pieces for manual harvest, 12 pieces for chemical spray, and 36 pieces for fertilizer application) were procured for 24 target ARBOs with 50% subsidy from SIFI. Farm-site orientations will be given to ARBOs who avail of the PPE sets.

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