Philippine Observatory on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
In 2020, against the backdrop of uncertainty brought about by the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Commission on Human Rights has initiated the development of the Philippine Observatory on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (a.k.a. PhORPD), in active collaboration with the six disability rights specialists, who represented the children with disabilities, persons with chronic/psychosocial disability, deaf/hard of hearing, with orthopedic impairment, speech impaired, and visual impaired. Due to the pandemic, rapid digital transformation has become even more necessary to keep track the human rights situation of persons with disabilities in the Philippines. The PhORPD manifests an interactive and reliable information center for, by and with persons with disabilities. It is intended to be continually improved, as it is being utilized, by all stakeholders in pursuit of the principle of universal design as proclaimed in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD).
The PhORPD is patterned after the UNCRPD. Through PhORPD, the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) expounds on the concepts and principles in the UNCRPD (for instance reasonable accommodation, social protection, and independent living) in so far as they are applicable to the unique circumstances of persons with disabilities in the Philippine context. In this sense, PhORPD is CHR’s digital platform to enrich the standards on the rights-based model of disability in the Philippines. More so, PhORPD has the features to gather data on how and to what extent the State-Party has considered or acted upon the 2018 concluding observations on the Philippines by the United Nations’ Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
Information in the PhORPD is presented using multi-media facilities, such as infographics, videos, and machine-readable texts. Data are generated through CHR’s existing mechanisms of monitoring, investigation, and legal assistance, including the education and promotion campaigns on human rights. Fundamental to the digital platform is the several partnership mechanisms that CHR convenes and maintains through the PhORPD, i.e. inter-agency within government, with organizations of persons with disabilities (OPD), business sector, academe, and civil society. Regular quarterly meetings are being held to discuss concerns and problems that confront persons with disabilities, such as on accessibility, limited government support during the COVID-19 Pandemic, and the need to accelerate the implementation of the Philippine law (R.A. No. 11228) on automatic coverage of persons with disabilities in the State-Party’s health insurance fund (a.k.a., PhilHealth), among others. Good practices of stakeholders are also being discussed and documented during these meetings. As such, the PhORPD is conveying a very strong message on the need to form a unified Philippine rights-based movement anchored on the meaningful participation of persons with disabilities, through an independent information dissemination that highlights persons with disabilities’ collective priorities and aspirations in order to live a life of dignity.
Mechanisms of Inclusive and Meaningful Participation
Pursuant to its mandate, the Commission on Human Rights has established mechanisms to promote, protect, and monitor the realization of the rights of persons with disabilities. One of these mechanisms is the conduct of regular consultations with the representatives from the sector to ensure their active and meaningful participation in making decisions that affect them, their rights, and their dignity. These consultations are also attended by government agencies and serve as an avenue where rights-holders can directly communicate their issues and concerns to the duty-bearers. This section features the highlights of the consultations with a focus on the programs, projects, and policies of each government agency present.
The PhORPD's research framework incorporates the systems approach whereby findings are being evaluated as part of the process to develop action-oriented measures in the form of guidelines, protocols, and rules of procedures that set standards in governance mechanisms, in order to address problems in the protection and promotion of human rights in a particular context. Inevitably, monitoring a human rights situation is a cycle because the primary objective is to ensure that rights-holders, such as Persons with Disabilities, fully enjoy a life of dignity, which is often realized progressively. Under PhORPD's auspices, the regular discussion between the rights-holders and the duty-bearers on the findings in the situation reports, as well as the standards being espoused, provide the opportunity to mainstream human rights-based approach, eventually enriching human rights standards anchored on Philippine experience and serving as solution patterns for other research problems. The framework is graphically shown as follows:
For this purpose, the standards refer to the recommendations to the Philippines by the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which was adopted in the form of concluding observations on 19 September 2018. PhORPD shall gauge the status of such recommendations based on the following rubrics:
1-Awareness | 2-Adoption into policy | 3-Resources are allocated | 4-Being Implemented | 5-Being monitored and evaluated
At this point, your involvement is vital. Please participate in this activity and click the corresponding buttons below to provide the needed information:
Access documents related to Concluding Observations
Timeline of treaties and laws, policies and government issuances involving Persons with Disabilities
Treaties and Laws
Programs, Projects, and Activities for/with Persons with Disabilities
All stakeholders from government agencies, civil society, academe, business, and the persons with disabilities themselves are requested to share and showcase their respective Programs, Projects, and Activities (PPAs) through this interactive map. More details on each PPA are shown once a location pin is clicked. For inquiries and submissions, please contact the Economic, Social and Cultural Rights Center – Commission on Human Rights through email: firstname.lastname@example.org or telefax no. (02) 8282-1878. You may also click this button and fill out the digital form:
The lofty ideals of protecting and promoting the rights-based model of disability are made more manifest in practice through such PPAs, including best practices that are mapped spatially herein. Keeping track of such efforts of all stakeholders further ensure efficient and effective allocation of resources, with due regard to their local context.