The Philippines would now allow entry of foreign parents of minor Filipino nationals, according to the resolution released by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases on Thursday.
Foreign parents of children with special needs regardless of age could also enter the country as long as they possess the appropriate visas.
The same rule applies to Filipino national parents with minor children, including those with special needs.
Previously, the government only foreign spouses and children of Filipinos were allowed entry to the Philippines. Still, it was expanded to include foreign nationals with permanent resident or immigrant visas starting August 1.
Last week, the Bureau of Immigration clarified that foreign tourists, non-immigrant visa holders, and other categories of foreigners are still prohibited from entering the Philippines.
BI Port Operations Division Acting Chief Grifton Medina said there are only four visa categories of foreign nationals who will be allowed entry starting August 1:
- those who were issued immigrant visas under Section 13 of the Immigration act;
- those who acquired resident status under Republic Act 7919 or Alien Social Integration Act;
- those who availed of Executive Order 324 or Alien Legalization Program; and
- native-born foreign nationals.
Meanwhile, Bureau of Immigration (BI) Chief Jaime Morente said Thursday that its campaign against human trafficking continues even amidst the COVID-19 crisis.
“As the world observes the World Day Against Trafficking in Persons today, 30
July 2020, we, in the BI, reaffirm and declare our unwavering resolve to combat
human trafficking in our ports by preventing the departure of suspected victims of
this menace to our society,” Morente said.
“These syndicates will always take advantage of every opportunity that may arise to spirit their victims out of the country,” he added.
The BI Chief believes trafficking syndicates are just around the corner and waiting for the right time to operate again and prey on poor Filipinos, mostly women.
“I have thus directed our port personnel to be vigilant and prepared to conduct stricter screening of departing passengers now that the government is eyeing less restrictions on outbound travel of Filipinos,” Morente said.