The sad plight of women with disabilities is more pronounced at this time of the pandemic caused by the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) said.
Thus, the CHR has urged public awareness and understanding on the challenges they face on a day-to-day basis as it joined in the observance on Monday, March 29, of the Women with Disabilities Day.
Under Proclamation No. 244 issued by the National Council on Disability Affairs (NCDA), observance of the Women with Disabilities Day falls on every last Monday of March.
The CHR pointed out that persons with disabilities (PWDs) are sadly at risk of falling into greater vulnerability and impoverishment during times of health crisis.
With the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) back in place, those who belong to the “no work, no pay” set-up have to worry once again where they will get their source of income, it said.
It lamented that Filipina PWDs might not even have enough supply of basic food items, medicines, and other necessities, such as hygiene kits for women.
“Ngayong araw, binibigyang diin natin na sa normal na sitwasyon, higit lalo na ngayong patuloy pa rin ang pandemyang COVID-19, kabilang ang mga taong may kapansanan sa mga pinaka-vulnerable at marginalized na mga indibidwal sa lipunan, (Today, we emphasize that in the normal situation, more especially now that the COVID-19 pandemic still continues, people with disabilities are considered as among the most vulnerable and marginalized individuals in society),” the CHR said in its social media post.
“Bukod sa banta ng pagkakaroon ng sakit, nahaharap sila sa iba’t ibang paglabag sa karapatan gaya ng kahirapan, diskriminasyon sa pagkamit ng mga pampublikong serbisyo, at kawalan ng access sa impormasyon, (Aside from the threat of getting sick, they face various rights violations such as poverty, discrimination in accessing public services, and lack of access to information),” it added.
At the same time, the CHR expressed its concern on PWDs’ access to information and hoped that the government will implement the Filipino Sign Language law so that any COVID-19 related information will be better communicated to those who are deaf and have impaired hearing.