MANILA -- Persons with disabilities living in poverty suffer a “dual handicap” and should be given priority by a P29-billion government cash transfer program, said Senator Ralph Recto.

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DWSD), which will be implementing the program, should include disability in its criteria for choosing subsidy recipients.

Recto said disabled persons should be at the top of the DSWD's list of beneficiaries of the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) program.

“I think the DSWD should provide access ramps to the CCT program because having a disabled family member impoverishes poor families further,” he said, adding that around 10 percent of the Philippine population have disabilities.

The CCT program, part of the DSWD's Pantawid pamilyang Pilipino Program, is expected to give around 2.3 million families P1,200 to P1,400 a month next year.

The money will be released on the condition that poor families will send their children to school and bring them to public health centers for medical check-ups and vaccination.

At the budget hearing for the DSWD on September 20, Senator Franklin Drilon told the DSWD to come up with a detailed report of how it will choose the beneficiaries of the program and how it will keep track of the program's implementation. (Jonathan de Santos/Sunnex)