The Autism Society Philippines (ASP) is a national, non-profit organization dedicated to the well-being of persons with autism spectrum disorder. The ASP has been in the forefront of providing services and training to families living with autism.

02 December 2014

Meeting the needs of the vulnerable

Being a parent or family member of a person with autism comes with very unique challenges and heartaches. Bullying and exclusion are only some of the situations many of us have faces in the our lifetimes.



Sustainable development can only be attained if the needs of the most vulnerable people in society are met. The national and local governments have made significant strides in adhering to stipulations of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the Magna Carta of Persons with Disability (RA 9442) and more work continues towards improving assistance given to vulnerable persons with disabilities. It is important to learn to maximize what’s available and develop a personal support network of other autism families.

Each local government unit (LGU) is mandated to create a Persons with Disabilities Affairs Office (PDAO) under Republic Act 10070. A handful of cities have exhibited forward-thinking in addressing the needs of those with physical disabilities, as well as those with “invisible” exceptionalities. The LGU is tasked with the release of the PWD IDs, which provide the PWA various benefits.

In case a drug store refuses to provide a PWD ID discount, PWAs and their families may write formal complaints with the details of the incident and file a complaint directly with the Bureau of Food and Drugs. Call the BFAD Hotline at +632-807-0751 or +632-807-8275. Their offices can be found here: http://www.fda.gov.ph/location-map

In case a person with autism (PWA) is involved or is witness to a crime, the PWA and their families may avail of free legal assistance with the Department of Justice, when consulting with the Commission on Human Rights (CHR), the Public Attorney’s Office (PAO), the Department of Social Welfare and Development, and the Philippine National Police (PNP). Contact the DOJ Action Center at the Ground Floor, Forum Building, Padre Faura Street, Ermita, Manila. Call +632-521-2930. Email dojac@doj.gov.ph. Read more here: http://bit.ly/10moeZO

If your child with autism is bullied in school, the protocol is to escalate your complaint to the multi-sectoral Child Protection Committee (CPC) -- a mandate under the Anti-Bullying Act (Republic Act 10627). The CPC is composed of the principal, guidance counselor, faculty member, a parent, a student council representative and a baranggay representative. If the school or learning center does not have this mechanism, please file a complaint at your Barangay Council for the Protection of Children (BCPC). More on the guidelines: http://ow.ly/F3YVc

Financially vulnerable families may avail of DSWD’s Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program, the country’s Conditional Cash Transfer program. The program assists qualified families with special needs to overcome their present difficult situation through the provision of educational cash grant per month per child and health cash grant for the family. More here: http://pantawid.dswd.gov.ph.

For other inquiries and concerns on the welfare of individuals with autism, you may contact the National Council for Disability Affairs at +632 932-6422. You may also reach out to them via their Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/nationalcouncilondisabilityaffairs.

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