The ASEAN Dublin Committee (ADC) made a joint virtual call on Irish Minister of Foreign Affairs and Defence Simon Coveney on 29 October 2020.
During the call, Philippine Ambassador to the United Kingdom Antonio M. Lagdameo expressed the Philippines’ appreciation to the Irish government for assisting in ensuring that the rights of the Filipino workers are upheld and that their welfare is being taken care of in Ireland. Expressing appreciation for the kind comments of the Irish people praising the positive work ethic of Filipinos, Ambassador Lagdameo said that one of the foremost concerns of the Philippine Embassy in London at this time are the Filipino nurses and other frontliners in Ireland during this COVID-19 pandemic, who continue to put their lives and safety on the line as the world continues to fight the vicious COVID-19 disease.
Ambassador Lagdameo expressed hope that the Irish government continues to render its support and cooperation with the Philippines in exploring ways to improve the living and working conditions of Filipino workers in Ireland.
In reply, Foreign Minister Coveney underscored that the role of Filipino nurses in Ireland’s health system is “hugely valued.” The Irish Foreign Minister said that Filipino nurses and other health care workers are “extraordinarily professional… quite simply many parts of our health system would not be able to function without the input and skills set that nurses from the Philippines bring to the Irish health system.” He expressed hope that Ireland is “doing everything that we should be doing in terms of ensuring that their living and working conditions are what they should be.”