CALAMBA CITY—Liberal Party (LP) standard bearer Mar Roxas on Wednesday said he will compel local government offices to strictly implement laws providing for friendly workplaces for persons with disabilities (PWDs) to maximize their potentials and ensure their mobility.
Roxas, in his campaign sortie here, said many PWDs are working in public and private offices, including in the business process outsourcing (BPO) sector which he reinvigorated when he was secretary of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).
He said many PWDs are working in BPO offices located in Metro Manila, Cebu, Bacolod, Baguio, Cagayan de Oro, Clark, Dagupan, Davao, Tacloban, Dumaguete, Lipa, Iloilo, Naga, Iriga, Iligan, Olongapo, and Urdaneta.
If elected president in the May elections, Roxas said that improving infrastructure features to make public places accessible to PWDs will be prioritized.
He said that unobstructed sidewalks, wide ramps, railings, wheelchair-accessible entrances, and provision for PWD bathrooms would be helpful to improve their work and mobility.
“By improving their mobility, we are empowering more PWDs in their pursuit of a good life,” he told the big crowd at the Old City Plaza here.
Roxas said the BPO industry has provided more than one million jobs to young and old workers, including PWDs.
As a result, he said, PWDs are no longer confined to working in saturated cottage industries, such as woodworking and craft-making.
“Our BPO has given our PWDs the chance to be competitive and an opportunity for them to work for standard salaries,” he noted.
The National Council on Disability Affairs said the PWDs account for 1.57 percent of the more than 104 million population. Less than a tenth of the 100,000 employed PWDs registered with the Department of Labor and Employment are earning wages regularly.
Roxas said that Republic Act 7277, otherwise known as The Magna Carta for Disabled Persons, and Republic Act 344, or An Act to Enhance the Mobility of Disabled Persons by Requiring Certain Buildings, Institutions, Establishments and Public Utilities and Other Devices, have not been fully implemented.