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    PST: October/11/2018 8:36:19

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    Quezon City, Philippines –– To assure tourists that it's safe and It's more fun in the Philippines, the Department of Tourism (DOT) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) have agreed to train more tourist police personnel.

    The DOT and PNP pledged to conduct the Tourist–Oriented Police for Community Order and Protection program (TOPCOP) nationwide in a memorandum of agreement (MOA) signed today at the PNP Headquarters in Camp Crame, EDSA, Quezon City.

    "We're happy to strengthen our partnership with the PNP to ensure the safety and security of international and domestic visitors in the country's tourist destinations," said DOT Secretary Bernadette Romulo–Puyat.

    The DOT chief said the TOPCOP training will showcase the "Filipino brand of service" highlighting the Filipinos' unique and genuine hospitality.

    "The PNP's commitment "To serve and protect" through unequalled service to our citizens and foreign travelers alike is laudable. We look up to you inspired to fulfil our mandate of contributing more inclusive impact in the lives of our fellow Filipinos. With your help, we can rest assured that we are not alone in sending a strong message to our visiting tourists that our country will continue and always will be a safe destination," remarked Puyat.

    PNP Chief Police General Oscar Albayalde joined Puyat in the signing of the MOA to be implemented by all DOT and PNP regional offices throughout the country.

    P/Gen. Albayalde welcomed the DOT's support and the vision of the program that will enhance police visibility in visitor areas, where PNP personnel will patrol, as well as set up tourist assistance centers and complaints desks.

    "Let me mention that your National Police is now on its journey of transformation, a significant part of which is the continuing enhancement and improvement of the skills, knowledge and work, attitudes of our police personnel. Along this line, we want to ensure that our police are highly trained, well–equipped and constantly prepared in performing their duties, especially in responding to crisis situation," said P/Gen. Albayalde.

    The TOPCOP program has trained 4,349 since it was launched in 2011 and is closely coordinated by the DOT Office of Industry Manpower Development (DOT–OIMD) and the DOT Regional Offices with the local government units (LGUs).

    The 2019 Integrated TOPCOP Training includes modules on a Tourism awareness, Basic Principles of tourist safety, and the Filipino Brand of service. To ensure better communication between the TOPCOP and the tourism stakeholders in the locality, a "TOPCOP Workshop Interaction with the Local Tourism Stakeholders" that will be used to develop a local security action plan will cap the three–day training.

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