POEA Orders Closure of Two Firms for Illegal Recruitment
The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) is serious to track down all illegal recruiters and fine sanctions and criminal case against them.
The POEA orders the immediate closure of two firms namely Firststep Consultancy and Development and LJP Travel Assistance Agency for recruiting applicants for abroad without having a license from POEA.
“Our Anti -Illegal Recruitment Branch put the two companies under surveillance and investigation after some of their victims reported to POEA their alleged recruitment activities,” said POEA administrator Hans Leo Cacdac
According to POEA, they sent operatives from their anti-illegal recruitment team who disguised as applicants to Firststep Consultancy where they discovered that this firm is recruiting chefs and cook for a certain employers in New Zealand and Australia, electricians for Canada and landscapers for United States of America. The operatives were then asked to do medical tests which costs around P3,800.
Firststep consultancy also asks applicants for the landscaper position in US to pay P37,500 for reservation fee, P10,000 for processing fee and USD250 for training interview and US embassy fee and P62,500 as loan. Applicants were advised to pay the fees through Firsteps’ two bank accounts.
On the other hand, LJP Travel Assistance Agency has also job openings for farm workers in Palau and were asking applicants P6,500 for the release of entry permits in Palau.
The POEA reminds once again the public not to apply in companies which do not have a license to recruit from them. Under Republic Act No. 8042, as amended by Republic Act No. 10022, any act of hiring Filipino workers when undertaken without license or authority from the POEA is considered illegal recruitment.
Cacdac said that POEA has already lists the owners and employees of the two companies the List of Persons and Establishments with Derogatory Record, effectively disqualifying them from participation in the overseas recruitment program of the government. A criminal case has also been filed against the firms.
Firststep Consultancy and Career Development is located at 2nd floor, Prince Jun Condominium, 42 Timog Avenue corner Scout Tuazon Street, Barangay Laging Handa, Quezon City while LJP Travel Assistance Agency is located at 1534 2nd Street near Main Street, Sta. Ana, Manila.