Support for HB 6203 approved

BAGUIO CITY - The city council last week approved the proposed resolution of Councilor Edison Bilog supporting house Bill 6203, for the removal of the height requirement for police, fire and jail officers.

House Bill 6203 is proposed by Cebu Representative Pablo John Garcia which seeks to amend RA 6875 and RA 9263. The measures created the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) and Bureau of Jail Management and Penology and provided provisions professionalizing said government agencies which included a height requirement: at least 1.63 meters (5'3") tall for males and at least 1.57 meters (5'1") tall for females.

The proposal of Councilor Bilog, chair of the committee of Human Rights, Justice, Public Protection, Peace and Order, is anchored on Article VII of the Universal Declaration of Human rights: "All are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law. All are entitled to equal protection against any discrimination in violation of this declaration and against any incitement to such discrimination."

The proposal also states that under Article XII, Section 1 of the Constitution, "the goals of the national economy are a more equitable distribution of opportunities, income and wealth a sustained increase in the amount of goods and services produced by the nation for the benefit of the people; and an expanding productivity as the key to raising the quality of life for all, especially the under-privileged."

"The height requirement, has denied a good number of possible candidates mostly women, the opportunity to serve the country, with the enactment of the legislative measure would effectively address this concern."

"Height, should not be a restriction for people who want to serve the country as police, fire and jail officer provided they possess other qualifications required in the effective performance of their duties," Councilor Bilog said in the resolution.

Copies of the resolution shall be furnished to Baguio's lone representative to the Congress Bernardo Vergara for his indorsement.

Indigenous People (IPs); specifically Cordillerans would be benefited from this legislation, though they could avail of Certificate of Confirmation of Tribal Membership which serves as waiver to the height requirement when applying as police, jail and fire officer. -juliegfianza

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