Senator Sonny Angara renewed his call to institute a lifetime validity for identification cards issued to select persons with disabilities (PWDs).
For individuals with permanent disabilities, Angara said common sense dictates that they should no longer have to renew their PWD IDs.
This includes those with an apparent disability or a disability which is manifested by the presence of physical impairment and impaired mobility or function.
Angara has refiled his bill granting lifetime validity to the PWD IDs of both PWDs with permanent disabilities and senior PWDs.
At present, PWDs are required to renew their PWD IDs every five years based on the guidelines set under the National Council on Disability Affairs Administrative Order No. 001 series of 2021.
This process poses significant challenges to most PWDs who have mobility issues since they would have to personally appear before the renewing offices to submit their documents and to be evaluated.
“It doesn’t help that many government offices and facilities, including public transportation, remain non-PWD friendly despite our many laws that require them to be accessible to PWDs,” Angara said.
Both the Batasang Pambansa Blg. 344 or the Accessibility Law and Republic Act 7277 or the Magna Carta for Persons with the Disability mandate making these offices and facilities PWD accessible
A 2021 report by the National Council on Disability Affairs also noted that only 43 percent of local government units have Persons with Disability Affairs Offices.
As he did in previous Congresses, Angara is refiling his bill to grant a lifetime validity for PWD IDs of PWDs with permanent disabilities or PWDs who are also senior citizens already.
Under the bill, the NCDA, in consultation with relevant stakeholders, would be tasked to issue a list of disabilities considered as permanent within 60 days from the effectivity of the law.
A PWD ID, which serves as the standard national ID for PWDs, shall be the basis for entitlement of privileges granted under the Magna Carta for PWDs.
The privileges include discounts on goods and services and VAT exemption for transportation fares, medicines, and medical services.