Declaration of Principles
Section 1. We are appalled at the widespread weaknesses permeating practically all sectors of Philippine society characterized by massive indifference, apathy, depravity, corruption, incompetence, and insensitivity by those who are vested with power and authority and the broad masses of our people.
Section 2. We realize that in many Third World Countries, as in the Philippines, millions of people have to grapple with extreme poverty. Inequitable distribution of wealth, lack of access to essential services, outright unemployment, under-employment, criminality, rebellions, climate change, environmental degradation and most especially, incompetent governance and corruption are among the causes which have driven desperate peoples to seek livelihood opportunities elsewhere - a multitude of them laboring under unbearable and degrading conditions - in order to provide their families with the basic necessities for human survival.
Section 3. We denounce such aberrations in the Philippines where about 10% of the estimated 90 million population have left their homes and families - either voluntarily or reluctantly - with the hope of improving the quality of life for themselves and their respective families. This massive movement of highly skilled and unskilled members of the Philippine labor force, a phenomenon not peculiar to the Philippines, is sometimes referred to as "Filipinos in Diaspora" - an unstoppable demographic flood of such massive proportion never seen before in the country's recorded and contemporary history.
Section 4. We acknowledge that because of the millions of Overseas Filipinos working all over the world either as contract workers, immigrants, permanent residents, undocumented workers or seafarers, unwittingly they have generated and caused the awesome inflow of foreign currency into the country thru their remittances, thus providing a great portion of the foreign exchange that has sustained and supported the nation's economy for decades. As this trend is expected to continue, the remittances of the Overseas Filipinos have become a critical factor not only in stabilizing the economy but also in the survival of sixty per centum of the population.
Section 5. We admire, respect and honor our hard-working compatriots in the homeland who apply daily their God-given strength and creativity in productive endeavors as responsible citizens. Inspired by love of country and family, they accept low-paying jobs where they are not treated fairly, denied the right to security of tenure, and with no health and retirement benefits. While they contribute significantly to national economic growth, yet they do not reap the benefits of such growth.
Section 6. We view with extreme urgency the need to address globalization; irreversible climate change and global warming; scientific and technological developments and their impact on Philippine society; religious fanaticism and militancy of competing systems of belief around the world, and; singly or collectively, their consequences on Philippine society. We firmly believe that unless and until Overseas Filipinos and their compatriots in the homeland link up with each other and work hand in hand with trustworthy officials and leaders in the public and private sectors, the critical preparations for responding to massive dislocations, emergencies, and calamities shall be inadequate, or worse, shall not be undertaken, thus increasing the likelihood of the country plummeting rapidly into chaos and disorder as a failed state.
Section 7. We recognize that in the global village where the rich states dominate the developing countries, and in geopolitics where military might dictates the terms of bilateral and multi-lateral relations, the Philippines is relegated to the rank of insignificant ally in any treaty that it enters into with the wealthy and the powerful. Given these scenarios, we uphold that the Overseas Filipinos and their comrades can cushion, prevent, and suspend the promulgation of political and economic policies and programs by the more powerful countries if they are credible and respectable enough to prevail on the policymakers of their host countries if, and when, such policies would threaten to have a negative impact on the Philippines as determined by local and international experts and/or after diligent consultations with the affected sectors and other stakeholders.
Section 8. With great sadness we observe that despite the widespread recognition and awareness among Overseas Filipinos and their leaders that unity, cooperation, coordination, and consultation are essential ingredients to the attainment of common goals and objectives, Filipino Overseas organizations continue to compete with each other or fight among themselves sometimes with disastrous results - in the process dissipating not only their resources and time and whatever goodwill they may have already earned as a group and as Filipinos in general.
Section 9. We decry that for many Overseas Filipino Workers, the long years of hard work outside of the homeland, and its over-bearing consequences - marriage break-ups; children and other family members getting hooked on drugs, prostitution and other vices, in the process becoming truants and ending up as criminals; and unsustainable lavish lifestyles - have not brought forth the hoped-for economic and social upliftment that compelled them to leave. Many Overseas Filipino Workers and their families find themselves back to square one in the homeland when their work contracts are consummated and/or terminated due to illness or even death.
Section 10. Beyond the very urgent personal concerns of Overseas Filipino Workers, we are also aware of the broad international dynamics and interactions that have a profound effect on societies and nations: The urgent need to “drain the swamps that breed martyrdom, fanaticism and revolutions". While the resources for such historic undertakings maybe available from the more advanced countries and international aid institutions, the resources of the Overseas Filipino Workers themselves may be indispensable in determining the course for the future generations.