The bicameral conference committee has approved the bill seeking to lower the minimum height requirement for aspiring members of the Philippine National Police (PNP), Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) and other law enforcement agencies.
Senator Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa, chair of the Senate Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs, confirmed that the bicameral panel was able to settle the disagreeing provisions of Senate Bill No. 1563 and House Bill No. 8261.
Dela Rosa, a former PNP chief, said the bicameral committee adopted the Senate version of the bill.
The senator said he would present the bicameral committee report on the measure in the Senate plenary session tomorrow, Tuesday, March 9, and for ratification.
Aside from the PNP and the BFP personnel, the measure will also cover applicants of the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) and the Bureau of Corrections (BuCor).
Senate Bill No. 1563 seeks to lower the height requirement to 5 feet 2 inches for male applicants and 5 feet for female applicants.
The minimum height requirement for applicants to these agencies currently stands at 5 feet and 4 inches for males and 5 feet 2 inches for females.
The Senate version also waives the height requirement for members of indigenous peoples and cultural minorities who are interested to be part of the force.
“We give more in law to those who have less in height. We make an important contribution in addressing the existing social inequalities for those not gifted with towering height,” Dela Rosa had said when he defended the bill.
The House approved on third and final reading of its version of the “PNP, BFP, BJMP, BuCor Height Equality Act” last Feb. 2, 2021, while the Senate approved its counterpart bill in September 2020.