MANILA — Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) officer-in-charge, Undersecretary Emmanuel Leyco, has underscored the need to sustain efforts to enhance the services for persons with disability (PWDs), as stated under Republic Act 10754 on expanding the benefits and privileges of the disabled.
It is therefore important to continue creating awareness on the needs of PWDs and encouraging government agencies and the private sector to address the welfare of the disabled in their priority programs, Leyco said in his opening message during Wednesday’s forum on initiatives in mainstreaming the rights of PWDs.
Representatives of various government agencies attended the forum to discuss the programs and services they offer for the marginalized and vulnerable sectors of society.
Ma. Karenina Perida Trayvilla, director of the labor department’s Bureau of Workers with Special Concerns, spoke about the livelihood programs that can be accessed by PWDs in their field offices, while Ma. Bernadette Refuerzo of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) shared how PWDs could avail of free training so they could learn new livelihood skills.
The Department of Health’s (DOH) Christina Raymundo discussed their services for PWDs, assuring them that the sector, just like other vulnerable groups, is among the department’s targets for better health outcome.
Philippine Health Insurance Corp. social insurance specialist, Neil Bautista, talked about how PWDs could avail of health services in government hospitals under PhilHealth.
Meanwhile, Clehenia Aurora San Juan of the Philippine Commission on Women (PCW) explained some of the rights of women with disabilities, as stated in the Magna Carta of Women.
For instance, she cited that using disability as a ground for disqualification in the granting of a scholarship is prohibited under Section 16, Article 6 of the Magna Carta.
DSWD Undersecretary Malou Turalde-Jarabe discussed their initiatives on mainstreaming the rights of PWD at the ASEAN level.
“ASEAN is committed to upholding and mainstreaming the rights of PWDs in the region,” she said.
DSWD social welfare development officer Marlen Moral laid down the department’s programs and services for PWDs, such as the Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situation (AICS), and the Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP).
She said indigent families with PWD children are also included as beneficiaries in the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps).
The department, she added, also provides technical assistance to local government units and city social welfare offices in mainstreaming PWDs in society and in pursuing programs that promote their rights and welfare.