De La Salle‐College of Saint Benilde Supports the INCLUSION of People with Disabilities in the Party‐list system! De La Salle‐College of Saint Benilde (DLS‐CSB) upholds the integrity and every right to representation of a bonafide, legal party list representing People with Disabilities (PWDs). While the country has signed agreements with other countries to “protect the rights of People with Disabilities” and has laws ensuring the rights of all, PWDs continue to struggle for their basic needs and rights. PWDs’ unique and specific concerns include the right to accessibility and language; freedom of expression and opinion; access to information and education; and participation in cultural life, recreation leisure, and sport—basic needs that are denied them but which they continue to work on through advocacies and legislation. Such efforts will be in vain without the aid of a legal party list composed of PWDs who best represent and understand the plight of their community. The COMELEC, in a decision penned by Commission Gregorio Larrazabal, has chosen to forgo and forget these laws and rights when it declared that it is convinced that the Disabled Pinoy Party—a sector representing PWDs—cannot launch a nationwide campaign, because it does not have the organizational mechanism to do so. This despite RA 7941 specifically states that: The State shall promote proportional representation in the election of representatives to the House of Representatives through a party‐list system of registered national, regional and sectoral parties or organizations or coalitions thereof, which will enable Filipino citizens belonging to the marginalized and underrepresented sectors, organizations and parties, and who lack well‐defined political constituencies but who could contribute to the formulation and enactment of appropriate legislation that will benefit the nation as a whole, to become members of the House of Representatives. Towards this end, the State shall develop and guarantee a full, free and open party system in order to attain the broadest possible representation of party, sectoral or group interests in the House of Representatives by enhancing their chances to compete for and win seats in the legislature, and shall provide the simplest scheme possible. DLS‐CSB supports the inclusion of People with Disabilities in the Party‐list System April 16, 2010
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May the COMELEC, the premier guardian of the Philippine ballot, be also the premier guardian of the rights of its nation’s voters, who deserve to choose from the “broadest possible representation of party, sectoral or group interests in the House of Representatives.” Let the Disabled Pinoy Party launch their nationwide campaign and participate in May 2010. Let the democratic system reign and let our informed and educated electorate make the decision regarding the party list’s organizational mechanism. Let us uphold the laws that ensure the rights of PWDs: •
1987 Constitution that ensures us [Section 11.] The State values the dignity of every human person and guarantees full respect for human rights.
Magna Carta for Disabled Person adopted by the Congress
Signatory on the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Under Article 29 of the Convention, the Philippines guaranteed to ensure “an environment in which PWDs can effectively and fully participate in public affairs” and in “political and public life on an equal basis with others.”
Until we recognize all human rights and allow a barrier‐free and inclusive society, only then can we call the Philippines truly democratic and free. April 15, 2010
DLS‐CSB supports the inclusion of People with Disabilities in the Party‐list System April 16, 2010
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Published on Apr 16, 2010
De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde (DLS-CSB) upholds the integrity and every right to representation of a bonafide, legal party list repre...