Barangay Health Workers (BHWs) in the city will soon be serving longer years as City Councilor Mary Joselle Villafuerte proposed to set their retirement age to 65.
Villafuerte filed a resolution to amend the criteria for termination of volunteer health workers enacted by the City Health Office (CHO) in 2007.
“It has come to my attention that our BHWs are removed upon reaching the age of 60,” she said.
“Why don’t we make them equal with the government worker or any worker because 60 is just an optional age of retirement for them. The mandatory age is 65.”
Villafuerte who chairs the committee on health filed the resolution under the suspended rules in Tuesday’s regular session.
According to Villafuerte, the BHWs brought the matter to her as they requested to amend the said criterion.
“I tried to do my research but I could not remember any ordinance allowing the CHO (City Health Office) to forcibly retire the person once they reach the age of 60,” she said.
In her resolution, Villafuerte mentioned Section 5a (6) of R.A. 10911, otherwise known as An Act Prohibiting Discrimination Against any Individual in Employment on Account of Age.
“Why not give this to our BHWs? They deserve the same amount of respect and opportunities that is given to us. They are not asking for anything special, they just want to experience the equal opportunity that others enjoy,” she said.
“I have two employees who are former BHW presidents in Marilog and Calinan who were terminated when they were 60. They are still very active. They have been able to do similar works in the Barangay that is similar to their duties as BHW before,” Villafuerte said.
She also noted that the city even lacks BHW and removing them early when they can still serve for five years adds to the problem.