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DFA says that Consulate is locating 50 Filipino teachers in Maui 

Photo courtesy of: Rick Bowmer/AP Photo

The Department of Foreign Affairs said that they are locating at least 50 Filipino teachers in Maui through the Philippine Consulate there following the massive wildfires that hit the island.

DFA Undersecretary Eduardo de Vega told CNN Philippines that the Philippine Consulate General in Honolulu will conduct a consular mission to get more information and to make sure that the Filipino teachers are safe.

“We’ve also authorized them already to provide financial assistance to at least 50 Filipino teachers who are identified as being in Maui under J-1 visas. That’s for sure,” De Vega said during the interview.

THe J-1 visa is granted to foreigners who are on work and study-based programs in the United States.

“They are in Maui and our consulate is locating them because we want to make sure that they’re not in Lahaina—the affected town. In the record, they are not in Lahaina, but they are in Maui. They may have been affected. They may have been for tourist purposes in the area,” he added.

The DFA official added that the government is ready to assist the teachers should they wish to be repatriated.

“Based on our experience, teachers, when they are abroad, they won’t ask to come home. They’ll ask for assistance maybe to transfer jobs,” he said.

The DFA said that at least 96 people have reportedly died due to the Maui wildfires.

“We cannot confirm if anyone is a Filipino citizen. Unfortunately, we have to expect the worst because there will be some Filipino-Americans among the casualties because 17% of the population of Maui are Filipino-Americans,” he added.

Staff Report

The Filipino Times is the chronicler of stories for, of and by Filipinos all over the world, reaching more than 236 countries in readership. Any interesting story to share? Email us at [email protected]

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