#JobStartToEQUAL: A Capacity Building Program on Inclusive Leadership for PESO and DOLE Personnel

On 15 and 17 February 2022, JobStart Philippines, a youth employment facilitation program implemented by the Department of Labor & Employment, with support from the Asian Development Bank and the Government of Canada, held a two-day online workshop for Public Employment Service Office (PESO) officers and regional DOLE officials on gender-sensitive delivery of employment facilitation services. It was facilitated by Philippine Business Coalition for Women Empowerment.

Over 200 PESO officers and staff nationwide participated in the said training. The participants were divided into two clusters: 1) Luzon and 2) Visayas-Mindanao from 47 JobStart PH-participating LGUs.

The first day of the plenary session was graced by Asec. Dominique Tutay, Employment and General Administration Cluster of DOLE; Mr. Stephané Duval, Acting Head of Cooperation and First Secretary of the Canadian Embassy in the Philippines, and Ms. Sophie Nguyen, Financial Sector Economist of ADB.

On Day 1, the workshop proper consisted of presentations on Workplace Gender Equality Policies and Practices: The Employers’ Perspective: 1) Jose Roland Moya, ECOP Director General and Abigail Gorospe ECOP Advocacy, Research and Communications Manager; 2) Olive Ybanez, Teleperformance PH Human Resources (Organizational Development) Director, and 3) Paola Antonio-Verayo, MERALCO Senior Assistant Vice President and Head, HR Business Partner-Shared Services.

The open forum for both days were moderated by Ms. Amor Curaming, PBCWE Program Manager, who also served as the virtual host and overall lead for this project.

PBCWE teamed up with the Employers Confederation of the Philippines to facilitate the breakout sessions. Through a rapid environmental scanning activity, the sessions enabled participants to identify key areas and opportunities of the JobStart PH Program in their respective localities, including gender targets. This activity also aimed to address gaps and determine responsive and inclusive strategies and directions.

On Day 2, we heard from the country’s business leaders on how workplace gender equality is an effective business strategy in retaining the top talent, and how it should be cascaded to all employees. Joining the virtual stage were 1) Ms. Monette Hamlin, TeamAsia Founder and President, and WomenBizPH Chairperson, 2) Mr. Aibee Cantos, Former President and CEO of Philam Life and Founding Member of the Male Champions of Change Philippines, 3) Mr. Art Florentin, Civil Service Institute Executive Director, and 4) Judd Balayan, DDB Group Philippine Group Chief Financial Officer.

Continuing what the participants have started during the first day of the breakout sessions, the participants were able to map out and draft initial action plans of their top priorities. These were presented during the latter part of the training session.

At the end of the training, Ms. Ana Liza Ragos, BLE Chief of DOLE, delivered the closing remarks.

#JobStartoEQUAL was sponsored by Asian Development Bank, the Government of Canada through its Global Affairs Office, and the Bureau of Local Employment of DOLE. We would like to thank the team of the Employers Confederation of the Philippines for their support.

Together, let us all make gender-equal workplaces a reality in the Philippines!

To know more about JobStart PH, please visit https://www.dole.gov.ph/jobstart-philippines-program/