Saturday, June 15, 2013


I had just recently applied for Sophia's PWD ID, (after much deliberation, that was.) In less than two weeks, I received the ID and two purchase booklets from DSWD. Now my daughter has her very own Identification card, with her name and picture and the mayor's signature... and oh, with the word AUTISM clearly printed on it in loud, bold letters.

Getting a PWD ID was a big step and it needed much thought. Before applying for the ID, I have read and reread the Magna Carta for Disabled Persons, making sure that I wouldn't miss anything really important. I needed to familiarize myself with the benefits this card (/title) entitles my daughter; the inclusions, the exclusions, and the fine print. After all, I have to know what I'm getting my daughter into, as she will be permanently into it for as long as she lives. 

I have heard a lot of complaints from PWD being denied of benefits, but I never really had any personal experience just yet. I was kinda hoping I'd never have to complain at all.

But then something happened today.

Sophia's grandmother shopped for Sophia's supplies earlier at Robinsons Supermarket (Lucky Gold). It was a usual trip to the supermarket to buy the usual things, and for the first time, Sophia's PWD card would be put to use. She got the usual 1.6 kg box of Nido 3+ and the usual pack of diaper, then presented Sophia's PWD ID, only to be informed by the cashier that the milk's not on their discount list at all. What? Seriously? No discount for something clearly stated in the Magna Carta as a basic necessity? Really? Sophia's grandmother even talked to the supervisor but the lady just kept saying that it's automated and they can't override it. Tsk, what about manually giving the discount? Not possible?

They gave a discount for the diaper but declined giving any discount for the milk, just because "that is how their system works". Wow, supervisor's blaming their system just so she wouldn't need to offer any other explanation. Since Sophia's grandma was in a hurry, she just paid in full for the milk and left the store immediately. Of course she was fuming. That was a terrible experience, after all.

The disappointment with Robinsons Supermarket intensified, when she checked with SM Supermarket if they give PWD discount for milk- she got a quick "yes" from the SM staff.

Robinsons Supermarket just violated Section 32(j), Chapter 8 of Republic Act No.944, which amends RA No. 7277, otherwise known as the Magna Carta for Disabled Persons and goes against the list found under Section 2(a) of the Joint DTI-DA Administrative Order No.02 Series of 2008 where infant formula/milk is identified distinctly under Basic Necessities.

It's just a measly 5% that they denied us, I know, but that measly 5% savings out of milk means a lot, considering Sophia's staggering monthly expenses.

It's not just about the milk or the discount anymore, it's about the way this corporation clearly violates the Magna Carta for Disabled Persons. It's not fair that they can just get away with violations just like this, because that only makes them all the more fearless in denying PWD what they rightfully deserve.