In the Philippine scenario
Social Technology Bureau
Department of Social Welfare and Development
The face of disabilityThe face of disability
in the Philippinesin the Philippines
•Pegged at 10% of the total populationPegged at 10% of the total population
(should be 8.86M based on August 2007(should be 8.86M based on August 2007
population census 88.6 million Filipinos )population census 88.6 million Filipinos )
•There could be more if we take the WHOThere could be more if we take the WHO
projection for Asia-Pacific (10% - 15%)projection for Asia-Pacific (10% - 15%)
•PWD population is expected to grow byPWD population is expected to grow by
4% annually4% annually
•Recent violence in Mindanao has renderedRecent violence in Mindanao has rendered
more people physically, emotionally,more people physically, emotionally,
and psychologically disabled latelyand psychologically disabled lately
•80% live in the rural areas80% live in the rural areas
•80% are impoverished80% are impoverished
•98% of children with disabilities do not98% of children with disabilities do not
go to schoolgo to school
•97% of PWD population do not get97% of PWD population do not get
appropriate servicesappropriate services
Understanding the Cycle of Poverty & DisabilityUnderstanding the Cycle of Poverty & Disability
There is a vicious circle between poverty and disability.
Poor people are more at risk of acquiring a disability because of lack of access to
good nutrition, health care, sanitation, and living conditions. Disability creates
barriers to education, employment, and public services that could help an exit from
It is estimated that 100 million people in the world acquired a disability due to
Basic premisesBasic premises
Disability is the result of the interaction between people withDisability is the result of the interaction between people with
different levels of functioning and an environment that doesdifferent levels of functioning and an environment that does
not take these differences into account.not take these differences into account.
What is Disability?What is Disability?
Disability = functional limitation x environmentDisability = functional limitation x environment
Disability is part of everybody’s life-cycle. Everyone is likelyDisability is part of everybody’s life-cycle. Everyone is likely
to experience disability at some point during his/her lifetimeto experience disability at some point during his/her lifetime
because of illness, accident or ageing.because of illness, accident or ageing.
Disability resides in society, not in the person (UN CRPDDisability resides in society, not in the person (UN CRPD
Handbook for ParliamentariansHandbook for Parliamentarians
An accessible physical environment benefits everyone, notAn accessible physical environment benefits everyone, not
just persons with disabilities. (Universal design)just persons with disabilities. (Universal design)
any loss or abnormality of psychological, physiological or
anatomical structure or function.
An impairment may be missing or defective body part, an
amputated limb, paralysis after polio, a facial disfigurement etc.
any restriction or lack ( resulting from an impairment) of ability
to perform an activity in the manner or within the range
considered normal for a human being.
Disabilities as a result of an impairment may involve difficulties
in walking, seeing, speaking, hearing, reading, writing among
a disadvantage for a given individual resulting from an
impairment or a disability that limits or prevents the
fulfillment of a role that is normal for that individual.
A disability becomes a handicap when it interferes with
one’s ability to do what is expected at a particular time in
one’s life. Children with disabilities may become
handicapped in caring for themselves, engaging in social
interactions with other children and adults,
communicating their thoughts and concerns, learning in
and out of school and developing a capacity for
independent economic activity.
TYPES OF DISABILITIES
can be described as the presence of a
below average general intellectual
functioning associated with or resulting
in difficulties in behaviours such as
communication, self care, social skills,
safety, work and leisure.
This was formerly known as mental
infections before, during or after birth
chromosomal and genetic abnormalities e.g. down
birth injuries e.g. poor oxygen supply to baby’s brain
low birth weight
growth or nutritional problems of the child
poor diet and health care by the mother during
substance abuse during pregnancy, including drug
consumption, excessive alcohol intake and smoking.
Side effects of drugs consumed during pregnancy which
may be non-prescribed or used for critical illness.
MEASURES THAT MAY
good health care during pregnancy,
labour and after birth
early detection of “high risk” pregnancies
screening tests for newborn babies
early detection of sensory disabilities
identifying special educational needs of
inability to process information and
effectively communicate with others
this could affect an individual’s personal,
social, educational, leisure and
A disorder that limits physical mobility
It can be generalized into three groups:
limited or no control of some or all
under developed skeletal structure
accidents which could result to spinal
cord injury, amputations and head injury.
Congenital conditions such as cerebral
palsy, spina bifida and muscular
Drug or alcohol abuse by pregnant
limited mobility makes it difficult to
access pubic transport and places of
study, and pursue to leisure, shopping
and other interests.
Home settings has to be modified to
enhance independence within the home
in all activities of daily living, e.g.
modified bathroom and toilet.
can be defined as a limitation in one or more functions of
the eye or visual system.
the terms partially sighted, low vision, legally blind and
totally blind are used to describe people with visual
Partially sighted indicates that some type of visual
problem has resulted in a need for special education .
Low vision generally refers to severe visual impairment
and applies to all individuals with sight who are unable to
read the newspaper at a normal viewing distance, even
with an aid of eyeglasses or contact lenses.
Legally blind indicates that a person has less than 20/20
vision in the better eye, or a very limited field of vision.
Totally blind refers to people who learn via Braille or
other non visual media.
congenital at birth
inherited, that is transmitted
occurred while the baby is
growing in the womb
trauma at birth
some eye disorders may be
present at birth but do not
show until the child is older.
infectious diseases such as :
SOME COMMON EYE
retinopathy of prematurity
aniridia- congenital lack of the
iris. This is genetically
Albinism- an inherited
deficiency or total lack of
pigment in the retina, iris,
choroids, skin and hair.
due to visual impairment, a child has little
reason to explore the environment and thus
may miss opportunities to have experience and
The child cannot see parents or peers, he or
she is not able to imitate social behaviors or
understand non verbal cues.
Children with visual impairment may need
additional help with special equipment and
modifications in the regular curriculum to
emphasize listening skills, communication,
orientation and mobility and daily living skills.
WHAT IS ADHD?
it is a developmental disorder
characterized by three (3) predominant
– restlessness or hyperactivity ( in many but not all
chemical imbalance or deficiency in
SIGNS OF ADHD
poor motor control
lack of organizational skills
poor social skills
is a disorder in one or more of the basic
psychological process involved in
understanding or using spoken or written
language. It may manifest itself in an
imperfect ability to listen, think, speak,
read, write and spell or to do
inherited or genetically
prenatal exposure to
drugs, alcohol, smoking
and toxic substances
short attention span
Problems in telling the
letters, numbers and
Poor eye hand
Difficulty in day to day
refers to problems in communication and related areas
such as oromotor functions. These problems range from
simple sound substitutions to inability to understand or
use language or use the oromotor mechanism for
functional speech and feeding.
hearing loss or impairment
physical impairments such as cleft lip or palate
Other medical conditions
occurs mainly due to brain damage and
can cause problems such as:
difficulty with speech production, e.g.
slow or slurred speech
difficulty understanding speech and
Difficulty reading and writing
affects a child’s confidence and self
child may become socially withdrawn.
is a neurological disorder that affects an
individual’s ability to think, feel and
communicate with others.
Is one of the most common developmental
disability and its characteristics show
themselves in the first three years of a child’s
Children with austim do not look any different
from other children. They are not physically
disabled. The common factor that everyone
with autim shares is a difficulty in understanding
the exact cause of autism is not known.
However, doctors believe that it could
be due to failure in the development of
the section of the brain that processes
SYMPTOMS OF AUTISM
delayed language skills
plays alone and does not play
with other children
lacks feeling or interest
towards other people’s
attempts at communication.
Short attention span
Dislikes physical affection.
Displays temper towards self
Difficulty in learning
Ability to learn one day but
not the next
Difficulty with changes in
Lacks eye contact
Repetitive and compulsive
behavior which when
interrupted may provoke
In some, extraordinary talent
or brilliance in specific skills
all children who have been diagnosed as autistic have problems in the area of social
interaction, social communication and imagination. They cannot understand the meanings of
gestures, facial expressions or tone of voice. Due to this, they may appear aloof and indifferent
to other people. These children may find it difficult to develop friendship with other children as
they have limited capability to understand others.
children with difficulty understanding the purpose and meaning of body language, and spoken
and written words. Thus, they will have difficulty communicating with others and participating in
school, playing and taking part in leisure activities.
in infancy, these children appear unusually sensitive to sensory stimuli such as food of different
texture, sound and light. The normal preoccupation with their own hand and finger movements
persists and become self stimulatory. In the second and third years, this self stimulatory
behaviors may become more obvious die to withdrawal from environmental stimulation.
Changes in daily routine for these children may lead to tantrums as a way of expressing their
extreme confusion and / or frustration.
can be defined as the
degree of hearing loss
ranging from mild to
before birth- maternal
accidents, irth cry,
exposure to radiation
during birth- premature
delivery, delayed birth
cry, trauma at birth
after birth- meningitis,
trauma after birth,
COMMUNICATION OPTIONS FOR CHILDREN
WITH HEARING IMPAIRMENT
aims at early detection and identification of hearing impairment and
integrates listening into the child’s total personality. Supports the
concept of mainstreaming and integration of hearing impaired
children into mainstream schools.
program adds visual skills to the auditory approach and teaches
children to receive information through speech reading, amplification
of sounds and listening.
uses all possible means ( listening, speech, reading and sign
language) simultaneously to give children the ideas and concepts of
uses gestures as symbols for words and concepts. Signing exact
English is a sign system using separate sign for each word as well
as other English language grammatical elements.
HOW TO TALK WITH A PWD?
Always address the person first- not the
Speak directly to someone who is hearing
impaired or visually impaired rather than to
an assistant or the guide.
Be patient if the person needs extra time to
do or say something
If the person uses a wheelchair, sit down to
talk so you’re at the same level.
Listen carefully and patiently to a person
with speech impairment.
Don’t touch a guide dog or a wheelchair or
crutches used by the person unless you’re asked
to do so.
WHEN AND HOW TO HELP?
Offer help if asked or if the need seems obvious.
The PWD do not want pity or special favors.
WHAT IS THE BEST THING TO DO
If unsure how to interact with a PWD, feel free to
ask the questions.
Always remember: Questions Don’t Hurt. Ignorance
HOW TO TALK TO A BLIND PERSON
Talk to me directly
I just can’t see but I can hear clearly
Address your questions directly at me
Don’t ask me through my companion
HOW TO GUIDE A BLIND
Making contact- when you are ready to walk with a blind person, lightly
touch the back of his/her hand.
Grip and Stance- the blind person holds the arm slightly above the elbow.
The blind person should always be half step behind the guide.
Changing sides- guide should stay where he is while the blind person
moves to the other side.
Narrow spaces- where its difficult to walk two abreast the guide should
make a definite move with his arm backwards and over to the center of his
Opening doors- the blind person must be on the hinge side of the door. If
not, he changes sides.
Going up and downstairs- the sighted should tell the blind that they are
approaching the stairs and whether they are going up or down.
Seating- when being seated in front of the dinner table, the guide takes the
blind persons’ hand and places it on the back of the chair so that the blind
has tactile contact and knows where the chair is.
Sitting at the table- the blind person must pull the chair away from the table
with one hand holding at the edge of the table.
Dining- if menu is provided, it should be quietly read to the one who is blind
WHEN INTERACTING WITH SOMEONE WHO HAS
When conversing with a person who uses a wheelchair or scooter,
position yourself at eye level in front of the person.
Be aware of what is and what is not accessible to a person who
uses mobility devices.
Rearrange furniture if there is something blocking the person’s path.
Offer to tell where accessible rest rooms, telephones, and water
fountains are located.
There are different reasons that a person can have mobility
impairment- spinal cord injury, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy,
muscular dystrophy etc.
People with mobility impairments can use a variety of assistive
devices: scooters, crutches, canes, walkers, wheelchairs.
Do not lean or hang on a person’s wheelchair or scooter.
Do not hang a coat or bag on the person’s wheelchair unless the
person says to do so.
These assistive devices are extensions of a person’s
Act naturally. Do not be afraid to use phrases like “ I am
going for a walk” or “ I have to run”.
When giving directions, consider distance, weather
conditions and physical obstacles.
Ask before giving any assistance.
Leave accessible parking places for those who need them.
Do not park in the hatch marks of accessible spaces.
Do not make assumptions about a person can or cannot do
based on his disability.
Do not feel sorry for a person who uses a scooter or
wheelchair to get around.
Get the person’s attention before you start talking. You can
wave to the person or tap him on the shoulder.
Be sure that the light falls on your face.
Avoid background noise to the extent that is possible
If you are aware that the hard of hearing person has a better
ear, stand or sit on that side.
Speak as clearly as possible in a natural way and at a
moderate pace. Don’t shout.
If the person does not understand what you said, rephrase it.
Do not obscure your mouth with your hands.
Facial expression and body language are important clues.
Use them properly.
Do not become impatient. Stay positive and relaxed.
Ask what you can do to facilitate communication.
Hearing impaired persons sometime find
certain people easier to understand. If you
have difficulty communicating . see if a co-
worker can be understood more easily.
Excuse yourself if you have to leave or
interrupt a conversation.
Do not ignore deaf people during
Never talk about a hard of hearing person
in his presence.
I have no legs,I have no legs,
But I still have feelings,But I still have feelings,
I cannot see,I cannot see,
But I think all the timeBut I think all the time
Although I’m deaf,Although I’m deaf,
I still want to communicate,I still want to communicate,
Why do people see me as useless, thoughtless,Why do people see me as useless, thoughtless,
When I am as capable as any,When I am as capable as any,
For thoughts about our world.For thoughts about our world.
——Coralie Severs, 14Coralie Severs, 14