SOURCE: Press and Public Affairs Bureau
29 March 2021 05:10:59 PM
House Special Committee on Persons with Disabilities Chairperson and Negros Occidental Rep. Ma. Lourdes Arroyo on Monday said that it is not only the men who need to take a good look at their potentially discriminatory notion and behavior but also women as well. In her inspirational message during the webinar in celebration of the 17th Women with Disabilities Day, Arroyo said women should examine themselves, their basic ideas, social norms as well as attitudes that also make them a party to the perpetuation of continued discrimination against women. “We must also examine ourselves and change our own attitudes about our assigned roles and be very careful not to dismiss ourselves women, and perpetuate behavior that systemic prejudice may have shaped in us. And most importantly, we must also be careful not to dismiss our own ideas, our own contributions and our own voices,” Arroyo said. As a person with disability (PWD), Arroyo said she knows the challenges PWDs faced every day in breaking down the barriers of gender equality and discrimination against women. “Let us look at our own path for inspiration particularly when it comes to women and leadership position in general. Our own history has proven that many Filipinos are ready for the onset of this true equality,” she said. Meanwhile, in her message read by Committee on Women and Gender Equality Secretary (ComSec) Joy Elena Piccio, Bukidnon Rep. Ma. Lourdes Acosta-Alba said that even before the pandemic, social protection and job security, access to health care, mental health services, education as well as other forms of support and protection have been hampered and discriminated against PWDs. She said although these disabilities and inequality have long been recognized, the global COVID-19 crisis has heightened and highlighted the issue of exclusion, making disability-inclusion work urgent and necessary. “Today’s celebration of Women with Disabilities Day is just one day but it reminds us to work every day toward an inclusive world in which no one is left behind,” Acosta-Alba, Chairperson of the Committee on Women and Gender Equality said. The webinar was organized and hosted by the National Council on Disability Affairs (NCDA) led by Executive Director Engr. Emerito Rojas and NCDA Information Education and Communication Division Chief Rizalio Sanchez.