Senator Manuel “Lito” Lapid has filed a bill seeking to scrap the renewal of identification cards for persons with permanent disabilities every three years.
Lapid’s bill aims to amend the Republic act 7277 or the Magna Carta for Disabled Persons that requires all PWDs to renew their IDs every three years so that their condition may be regularly evaluated.
He pointed out that this re-evaluation should no longer apply to those with “permanent disability” such as those who have pre-existing birth defects, permanent blindness or deafness, loss of limb or body parts.
The senator added that the process is troublesome to the beneficiaries and a waste of government resources.
He said that giving PWDs a lifetime validity for their ID will spare them from the inconvenience of going back to issuing offices every three years, filling up the forms and having to fall in line.
“Hindi na sila dapat pahirapan pang i-renew ang kanilang PWD ID lalo na kung ang kapansanan nila ay panghabang-buhay na. Makakabigat lamang sa kanila ang pagsasailalim sa paulit-ulit na proseso ng pagkuha ng ID at pag-aaksaya lang din ito ng kanilang oras at salaping pambayad sa renewal fee,” Lapid said.
Under the bill, in order to be entitled to the lifetime validity of a PWD ID, the permanent disability of the holder must be certified by the municipal or city health officer.
The proposed bill also mandates issuing offices to ensure that the lifetime validity of these cards will not be abused, especially after the holder dies.
Meanwhile, Senator Sony Angara sought a Senate probe last June on reported abuse in the issuance of PWD IDs, after complaints filed against a certain family in Quezon City whose members had been registered as PWDs despite of non-submission of needed documents.
Department of Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año has encouraged local government units to enforce strict measures regarding issuance of PWD IDs.