The Autism Society Philippines (ASP) is a national, non-profit organization dedicated to the well-being of persons on the autism spectrum disorder. We envision a society where Filipinos on the spectrum become the best of their potentials -- self-reliant, independent, productive, socially-accepted citizens of an Autism-OK Philippines.

09 November 2011

Towards a Safer Metro Manila for PWDs

By: Ranil Sorongon, ASP Executive Director

Would residents of Metro Manila, and the Filipinos in general, believe the metropolis is still safe to live? A very provocative question which I’m sure will be a good subject for debate.

Like all the others, the members of the Regional Council on Disability Affairs of the National Capital Region (RCDA-NRC) were a bit surprised when Police Senior Superintendent PSSupt. Franklin Moises Mabanag of the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) gave them a briefing on the Peace and Order Situation of Metro Manila. He said Metro Manila (MM) is safer, compared to other cities in the world; even if their own report says that the crime incidence in MM is rising.

Metro Manila is composed of 16 cities and 1 municipality with a total population of 17.3 million people. There are 5 police districts, with a total police force of 17,493 - 16,816 uniformed and 677 non-uniformed personnel. At present the ratio of our policemen vis-a-vis the population of MM is 1 is to 705, while the ideal ratio should be 1 is to 500.

According to both PSSupt. Mabanag and Dep. Police Regional Dir. Laurel, the new method of crime reporting called “Unit Crime Periodic Evaluation Report” records data collated from every police precinct in the metropolis; including blotter and amicably settled cases, to give the real picture of the metropolis.
(left) Dep. Police Regional Dir. Laurel and (right) PSSupt. Franklin Moises Mabanag of the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO)

As members of RCDA, the group asked whether a “Sensitivity Training on Disability” was included in the training module for would-be policemen and policewomen. Regional Dir. Laurel responded that as of the moment, it is not yet included. As recommended by the group, he will take this into consideration for the next batch.
Members of RCDA having a meeting

Another issue is no data is collated on Crime Committed By or Against Persons with Disabilities (PWD), since most of the time the data is included in Non-Index or Crime against Special Laws.

To mitigate the commission of crime in the onset of the Christmas season, both speakers said that police visibility will be increased, and Special Reaction Units will be deployed and additional police personnel will be recruited to reach the ideal ratio of 1 policeman to 500 individuals.

As for the PWD Sector, the group is hopeful that the policemen, especially in MM, will become aware, knowledgeable and be protectors of the rights of PWD. If Metro Manila will be safe for PWDs, indeed it will be a safe place for all.

Special thanks to Police Director Alan DM Purisima, the officers and members of NCRPO for hosting the meeting of the RCDA-NCR last October 11, 2011.


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