TACLOBAN CITY-To update the Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) sector of the city about the benefits and privileges available to them under the law, the city government, through the City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO), gathered them in a social enhancement and PWD updates forum.
About 300 members of organizations for the differently abled attended the activity held on Friday (Jan.5) at the CEO Gym from 8 am to 5 pm.
Officials of the CSWDO, namely Department Head Fe Chona A. Bahin and Social Welfare Officer (SWO) III Marlou G. Sabate, emphasized in their messages the relevance of the said activity in the enhancement of the well-being and inclusion of disabled people in mainstream society.
In an interview for the City Information Office Radio Program, “Sumat Tacloban,” Sabate, who is the focal person for the PWD of the CSWDO, encouraged members of the differently abled sector to join an organization and register with the Persons with Disabilities Affairs Office (PDAO) so they can be issued IDs and access government programs catered for them and benefits, such as discounts on their purchases.
The highlight of the activity was a presentation on R.A. 10754, or an Act Expanding the Benefits and Privileges of Persons with Disability (PWD), which was discussed by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Region 8 PWD Program Focal Person and SWO II Carmela Pullantes-Sabalo.
Sabalo underscored that under the law, PWDs are entitled to a 20 percent discount on their food and medicine purchases and travel fare.
Mandatory PHILHEALTH and SSS coverage are also guaranteed under the law, as is a special lane for abused PWDs.
In the meantime, hygiene kits were distributed to the attendees during the activity.
As of October 2023, there are more than 3,400 registered PWDs in Tacloban City, according to the CSWDO.
(HJ ROCA with reports E. LAGAHIT/CIO)