Working with challenges

Ms. Celeste M. Valderrama, Director, International Labor Affairs Bureau, Department of Labor and Employment, Philippines, discusses how challenges are worked with and overcome (December, 2011).

“Keeping my people who are skilled already in this area of concern is a major challenge, but we do appreciate the support of the ILO in this area because they provide us with training opportunities, but it’s quite limited, so even the number of people who are really trained to do the job is… We have to do it just one person at a time, right? … I don’t know, maybe it’s the commitment. Maybe they realize that the motivation is really knowing that there is no one else who can do this type of job. [laugh], and also knowing that we cannot afford to put a Government in an embarrassing position. The high level mission that came out after the finding has impressed on us more than ever the importance of paying details… of paying attention to the details of the report, so that we can ensure that , hmmmm… the evaluation by the Committee of Experts is based on a more complete, more comprehensive data. That is why our management, our leaders, put a lot of premium on this area of concern. But it’s not only the reportorial obligation, it’s not only commitment to the standards, compliance to the standards, it recognizes the value of international labour standards, because we have a lot of people everywhere overseas so we can’t do it just by ourselves. We should be able to do it together with the rest of the world.”

Special thanks got to the Honorable Secretary of Labor and Employment of the Philippines, and the Director and staff of the International Labor Affairs Bureau of the Department of Labor of the Philippines for their generous cooperation in the production of this video.