FROM GMA NEWS
Solons push for bills, coins that the blind can ‘read’09/17/2010 | 09:44 PM
More than half a million blind Filipinos and others who are visually impaired to a less degree are expected to benefit from a proposed law that requires paper bills and coins to have “raised markings."
In House Bill 3209, Bayan Muna party-list representatives Neri Colmenares and Teodoro Casiño said it is about time the Philippines adopts designs of paper bills and coins that are elderly-friendly and visually impaired-friendly.
The bill seeks to amend Section 53 of Republic Act 7653 and to urge the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas to design bills and coins with features that can be easily discerned by the elderly and the sight-impaired.
“Each currency denomination, whether notes or coins, shall have different sizes or designs and that each note shall have raised dots or markings to signify its denomination," the bill states
It added: “The Monetary Board shall always consider the elderly and the differently-abled when designing notes and coins."
Although various denominations of paper bill and coin differ in color, they still have the same or similar sizes and do not have features such as Braille characters or other marks that can be easily recognized by the elderly and visually impaired, the lawmakers said.
“Raised dots signifying ‘100’ or ‘500’ for example on the top left front side of a note that can easily be felt by touch and would differentiate it from other denominations would greatly help our elderly and visually impaired," they said.
Oftentimes, the elderly and sight-impaired have to ask other people to tell them how much cash they are getting or giving, which not only makes them vulnerable to fraud but also contributes to their disempowerment, they said.
“This essentially denies them meaningful access to the use of the currency," the party-list representatives said.
They said that it is the policy of the State to exert all efforts to remove all social, cultural, economic, environmental and attitudinal barriers that are discriminatory to differently-abled persons.—Amita O. Legaspi, GMANews.TV