House OKs 400% hike in veterans’ disability pension rates

Published August 28, 2020, 3:37 PM

by Ben Rosario

A bill proposing an increase of over 400 percent in the disability pension rates of veterans and their beneficiaries has been approved on third and final reading by the House of Representatives.

MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO

With 226 affirmative votes and zero negative, House Bill 7203 was passed on final reading and will be transmitted to the Senate for its action.

Authored by Muntinlupa City Rep. Ruffy Biazon, HB 7302 proposes to amend Republic Act 6948 or the Act Standardizing and Upgrading the Benefits of Military Veterans and their Beneficiaries.

HB 7302 refers to benefits granted a veteran who has been rendered disabled as a result of sickness, disease, wound, or injury sustained in the line of duty.

The bill sets the disability rate granting an increase in the base rate which will now be P4,500 monthly from the current P1,000.

HB 7302 also increase the monthly disability pension for spouses and each unmarried children of veterans with services connected disability rating from 91 percent to 100 percent.

Biazon’s proposal also grants veterans without a service-connected disability a monthly pension of P1,700 as soon as he or she reaches 70-years-old.

The veteran lawmaker noted hat since 1994, the amount of disability pension granted qualified veterans ranges from P1,000 to P1,700, depending on the rate of disability.

The amount has not been adjusted “despite serious economic downturns that effectively made the amount negligible and unrealistic” compared to the cost of medicines, hospitalization, and other basic needs of a person who served in the service.

Biazon said the bill seeks to provide veterans with disability pension ”in view of their own loss of capacity to be gainfully employed as a result of sickness and injuries sustained in the line of duty.”

“However, looking at the current state of the disability pension, it cannot be denied that the amount mandated by RA 7696 in 1994 has already lost its value to support even the very basic needs of the disabled and aging veterans and their beneficiaries,” the Muntinlupa solon stressed.

 
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