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The Philippines aupair ban lifted for Norway

Good news to all aspiring aupairs bound for Norway. The Philippines has lifted the aupair ban to Norway and we are reposting the news article from the Philippine Embassy in Norway. This news was relayed to us by our Ambassador Elizabeth Buensuceso last Independence Day celebration in Copenhagen  and she also expecting that Denmark will soon follow.

After extensive discussions and negotiations with the government of Norway and various agencies in the Philippines, the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs and the Department of Labor and Employment have announced the lifting of the ban on the deployment of au pairs bound for Norway. The order will take effect immediately. Norway is the only other country in Europe (the other is Switzerland) where the ban has been lifted.

Both agencies expressed satisfaction that the conditions prevailing in Norway warrant sufficient safety nets to promote and protect the rights and welfare of the au pairs in this country. The Norwegian government has also exercised flexibility and accommodation of the Philippine government’s requirements to provide safety nets to provide health insurance for au pairs as well as cover their repatriation in case of death or when they are no longer able to fulfil their contracts due to terminal illness and other similar reasons. According to the Norwegian authorities, the au pair contract has already been amended to reflect such provisions and will be effective in June 2010.
The POEA will be announcing the appropriate guidelines in implementing the order. Au pair contracts will now have to be submitted to the Philippine Embassy in Oslo for authentication. The contract will then have to be submitted to the Philippine Overseas Employment Authority (POEA) to obtain the necessary permit and for the applicants to undergo pre-departure orientation seminars to prepare them for their new life in Norway. The au pair will, of course, have to obtain the requisite visa from the Norwegian Embassy in Manila, The contract, the passport with the requisite visa and the POEA permit will be presented to the Bureau of Immigration upon departure.

The Embassy and the POEA have also developed a DVD to be used in the pre-departure orientation of future au pairs to acquaint them with their new life in Norway.

The Philippine Embassy reiterates its warning to au pairs not to give any amount to any party or middlemen to facilitate their departure. Any attempt to obtain money from au pairs, outside the official fees duly acknowledged with official receipts, should be reported immediately to the Philippine Embassy or the Department of Labor and Employment for appropriate action.

The Embassy is also in the final stages of negotiations with Denmark so that the ban could also be lifted on au pairs bound for this country. The Minister of Refugee, Immigration and Integration Affairs, Birthe Røhn Hornbech has indicated her positive response to the proposals of the Philippine Embassy on the matter.

With the lifting of the ban , the two countries have now aligned their otherwise divergent policies on the matter, and should, hopefully reduce or eliminate the factors leading to the exploitation of the system. Au pairs will now be given an opportunity to learn about Norway and in turn be able to help their host families.

This lifting ban doesn’t mean that the aupair problems will stop but will surely will increase but reading the Guidelines or a memorandum of Agreement between the two countries at least the aupairs will have the security in case they become sick or die during their au pair stay then they host family will shoulder their repatriation. (Will discuss it further next post)

You can read the original post here

Now the applicant will have to go to POEA ( Philippines Overseas and Employment Agency) to process their exit clearance so they will not encounter any problem exiting the country.  Upon presentation of the exit clearance  there’s no need to bribe their way out of the country and it also entitles them to exemption in paying travel tax (php 1600)  and airport terminal fee (php 750).

Filipino au pairs bound for Norway shall be processed at POEA as name hires. The following documents shall be submitted by the au pair to POEA:

1) Au pair contract signed by the au pair and the head of the host family duly authenticated by the Philippine Embassy in Norway.
2) Copy of passport with the stamped valid au pair visa
3) Pre Departure Orientation Seminar (PDOS) certificate issued by the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA)
4) Valid “fit to work” medical examination result.

Included in the agreement is the insurance that will be provided by the host family in case the   fell ill or died during her stay that remains will be repatriated to the Philippines in case of death.

You can download the guidelines for the selection and deployment of aupairs to norway here

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