By Mayen Jaymalin Updated May 25, 2009 12:00 AM
MANILA, Philippines - More Filipino nurses and teachers are likely to go abroad because of a pay hike rejection, the local recruitment industry reported yesterday.
House appropriations committee chairman Quirino Rep. Junie Cua said that the government’s soaring budget deficit could not afford a huge increase for the estimated 600,000 teachers and nurses nationwide.
Recruitment leaders said instead of working here, more Filipino professionals opt to go abroad for higher pay.
They noted that there are thousands of vacancies awaiting Filipino nurses, teachers and other professionals in the US and Middle East.
“Since they cannot expect any increase in pay here, many nurses and teachers will just work abroad,” recruitment officials said.
Congressmen led by Nueva Vizcaya Rep. Carlos Padilla had proposed a P13,000 increase in pay of nurses and teachers to help them cope with the financial crisis and stave off the exodus of Filipino professionals, but this was rejected due to the government’s lack of budget.
The low pay has compelled a lot of Filipino nurses and teachers to seek greener pastures abroad.
Based on a Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) data, more than 130,000 nurses have left for abroad from 1992 to 2007.
During the same period, 8,000 teachers have also gone abroad mostly on immigrant visas, attracted by the huge difference in pay scale and permanent residency in the USA and other countries.
The Middle East alone has been increasing its demand for Filipino nurses with Saudi Arabia currently employing some 30,000 nurses.
The United Kingdom has also re-opened its door for the entry of foreign nurses, including Filipinos.
For the past two years thousands of Filipina nurses whether board or non-board passers have entered UK as student nurses and enrolled in various universities while working part-time in care homes and hospitals.
SOURCE: More nurses, teachers will go abroad with pay hike rejection - recruiters
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