FOUR government institutions have forged unity of which the purpose is to establish a housing project intended for 130 persons with disabilities (PWDs) in Quezon City.
In an agreement signed on Wednesday, the joint project of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Quezon City government, office of QC Rep. Jorge Banal r., and the non-governmental-organization Gawad Kalinga will build 130 housing units at the DSWD’s National Vocational Rehabilitation Center (NVRC) in Barangay Escopa 3 in Quezon City.
Sec. Judy Taguiwalo lauded the project and expressed hope that it will be immediately implemented.
She also is hoping that other local government units will copy what QC Mayor Hebert Bautista did for the PWDs.
Bautista stressed the necessity and importance of LGU’s help to the DWDs in terms of giving them decent shelter.
Data provided by the 2010 Census of Population and Housing (2010 CPH) disclosed that some 92.1 million household population in the country, where 1.4 million persons (or 1.57%) of them have some form of disability.
Under agreement of DSWD, Mayor Bautista, Rep. Banal, and the Gawad Kalinga, the QC LGU will oversee the land development, Gawad-Kalinga will take charge of the housing component and the DSWD will ensure the implementation of guidelines that govern the selection and disposition of the home lots.
The intended beneficiaries of the project are the on-site PWD families who will be identified, selected, and pre-qualified by the Beneficiary Selection Committee headed by the DSWD.
The project site, consisting of more or less 5,083 square meters shall be developed in conformity with Batas Pambansa 220 Design Standards (BP220 is entitled “Revised Rules and Standards for Economic and Socialized Housing Projects to Implement Batas Pambansa Blg. 220).
Taguiwalo explained that the project will comprise of complete land development and construction of more or less 130 two-storey walk-up housing units with 21 square meters floor area, excluding corridor space.
The DSWD will be primarily responsible in defending the title of the property against any administrative or legal claims, suits, or proceedings.
The DSWD is the lead agency in the selection of qualified beneficiaries and in the resolution and arbitration of disputes relatives to beneficiary selection.
DSWD will also formulate a mechanism and/or legal instrument which shall be used and serve as the basis for the distribution and/or award of completed housing units to qualified PWD beneficiaries, and assist in the conduct of community development activities.
While there is this kind of project for the PWDs, Taguiwalo admitted that “The Philippines still has a long way to go to improve the promotion and enforcement of benefits and privileges for PWDs. In the same way that many members of the poorest and marginalized sectors of our society are denied vital social services, the rights of many PWDs are also neglected. Many PWDs have productive skills which they use to help themselves make a living, but they need all the assistance they can get. Providing them with free or socialized housing is a very important service and will significantly ease their financial burdens which are myriad because they need to spend so much on medicine, health services, as well as special equipment,” Taguiwalo stressing the explicit instructions of the Republic Act No. 10754, otherwise known as An Act Expanding the Benefits and Privileges of Persons with Disability, purportedly intended to the PWDs.
“We hope that all business establishments covered by the law will implement the law and give what is due to PWDs,” she added.