OFFICE OF REP. DEOGRACIAS B. RAMOS, JR
Government should help ease the financial burden on families caring for children with special needs by allowing a deduction on a parent or legal guardian’s taxable income.
Rep. Deogracias Ramos, Jr. (Sorsogon, Second District) said families with special needs children have different out-of-pocket expenditures than those with regular children.
“We should help children, regardless of any difficulties or differences they may have, to fully realize their potential for development. By allowing a tax deduction on a legal guardian’s taxable income, we help families reduce their expenses and hopefully provide better care,” he remarked.
Under House Bill 3765, a taxpayer caring for a child with a disability will be able to get a tax deduction of P50,000. Expenses that qualify for a deduction are:
• Tuition for a private school
• Diagnostic evaluations by a medical professional
• Transportation expenses to school or a medical facility
• Specialized instructional materials
The Department of Education’s Special Education Division estimates the cost for taking care of a child with a disability is at least double compared to regular children.
Based on the 2009 Family Income and Expenditure Survey, Filipino families earned an average of P206,000 and spent P176,000 on the average. This translates to an average annual family savings of P31,000 in 2009. On a monthly basis, the reported average income was P17,200 and average expenditure was P14,700.
Families in the bottom 30% income group reported an average annual family income of P62,000. Families in the upper 70% income group earned an average annual income of P268,000. On a monthly basis, the average income of the families in the bottom 30% was P5,200 while the upper 70% earned an average of P22,300.
A child with a disability is understood to be one who is intellectually disabled, has hearing impairments (including deafness), speech or language impairments, visual impairments, serious emotional disturbance, orthopedic impairments, autism and traumatic brain injury.
Rep. Ramos pointed out that families living in the provinces have a harder time getting an educational program and medical assistance suitable to the child’s needs.
He said children with different disabilities are often grouped together rather than have separate classes for each condition.
Children with a learning disability topped the list of special needs children enrolled in a public elementary school as of 2009. A total of 51,296 children were assessed as learning disabled, while the number of mentally retarded/intellectually disabled children stood at 13,119. Children who are hard of hearing ranked third with 12,039.
For School Year 2007 to 2008, the number of enrolled children with special needs in public and private elementary schools stood at 92,429. This translates to a 27.6% increase compared to School Year 2004 to 2005’s total of 79,118. Many children no longer pursue secondary education or stay in elementary schools for an extended period of time.
About Rep. Deogracias B. Ramos Jr.
Liberal Party – Sorsogon, 2nd District
Rep. Deogracias B. Ramos, Jr. represents the Second District of Sorsogon in the House of Representatives. The district covers Bacon, Gubat, Barcelona, Bulan, Irosin, Santa Magdalena, Matnog, Juban and Prieto Diaz.
He currently serves as vice-chairman of the Committee on Natural Resources, Committee on Rural Development and Committee on Bicol Recovery and Economic Development.
Rep. Ramos received numerous national awards during his time as Mayor of Gubat, a second-class municipality in Sorsogon. These include:
• 1994 National Population Development Award
• 2002 TESDA Kabalikat Award
• 2004 Department of Agriculture Gawad Saka Award
• 2009 National Nutrition CROWN Award
• 2009 Punong Bayan Award of Excellence from the League of Municipalities of the Philippines.
The Congressman played a pivotal role in the establishment of the Bicol University – Gubat Campus.
The awards and the creation of the BU – Gubat Campus reflects the Congressman’s commitment to Agriculture, Education, Health, Nutrition and Public Service.
T: (02)9315001 local 7210.