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Free movies for PWDs in Davao City but chaperones must pay

DAVAO CITY – City residents with disabilities will soon enjoy the privilege to watch free movies in all cinemas in Davao City, just like senior citizens. However, chaperone or guardian who will accompany the Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) must pay.
by RepublicAsia

By Armando B. Fenequito Jr.

DAVAO CITY – City residents with disabilities will soon enjoy the privilege to watch free movies in all cinemas in Davao City, just like senior citizens.

However, chaperones or guardians who will accompany the Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) must pay.

Who gave this privilege

The Sangguniang Panlungsod passed and approved an ordinance on the third and final reading Tuesday, January 24, granting PWDs free, but limited, access to all cinemas in Davao City

City Councilor Temujin “Tek” Ocampo, vice chairperson of the Committee on Social Services, said the measure was unanimously approved by all the councilors present during the session Tuesday.

Committee on Games and Amusement Councilor Jessica Bonguyan authored the ordinance entitled “Persons with Disability Free Movie Privilege.”

“I think it’s a high time for our brothers and sisters in the (PWD) sector to be given them this privilege just like to our senior citizens,” Ocampo said.

Who are qualified

He said the privilege is exclusively for the residents of Davao City bearing the PWD identification card issued by the City Social Welfare and Development Office.

However, Ocampo clarified they could not extend the privilege to the chaperone or guardian who will accompany the beneficiary.

Under the Magna Carta for Disabled Persons (Republic Act 7277), PWDs are those who are suffering from “restriction or different disabilities, as a result of mental, physical, or sensory impairment, to perform an activity in the manner or within the range considered normal for a human being.”

PWDs also refer to cancer survivors (RA 11215) and persons with rare diseases (RA 10747).

When is the start?

He said after its passage in the plenary, it will be transmitted to the office of Mayor Sebastian Z. Duterte for approval. Next to approval is publication and 15 days after this, the ordinance will be implemented.

PWDs can avail of the free passes only once a week, i.e. every Monday and during the first screening only.

“However, cinemas are not prohibited from offering the free privilege on additional days of the week,” the ordinance said.

If the PWDs opt to screen another film on the scheduled free movie day, they will pay the regular fee with 20 percent discount as mandated by the RA 7277.

More details of the free-cinema privilege

  • Non-transferable. Section 3 of the ordinance says the free-movie privilege shall be non-transferrable and may be only availed by a PWD.
  • PWD presence during transaction. “If the PWD cannot personally transact with the cinema personnel, he/she may be represented by his/her companion for transaction purposes, provided, they are present during the transaction,” the ordinance stated.
  • No-ID, no entry. Cinema operators must implement a no-PWD id, no-entry policy since it is a requirement set in the ordinance.
  • Regular cinemas only. The privilege only applies to regular cinema and not to special theatres like Dolby ATMOS, 3D, 4D, Imax and Director’s Club.
  • Blockbuster films. “For blockbuster films, the free movie privilege may be only availed of during its second week,” the ordinance said.
  • Not in movie premiers. It stated that the privilege does not extend to screenings for special events such as sponsored movie premiers, pay-per-view and others.

Get a PWD booklet

The ordinance said the Persons with Disabilities Affairs Office (PDAO) will issue availing PWD with a movie pass booklets which contain the serial number, beneficiaries name, photo, ID number address, and signature.

“The booklet shall also contain the dates and number of movies that the PWD may avail of during the entire year,” it stated.

Cinema’s responsibilities

During the free movie day, cinema operators are mandated to allot at least five percent of its total seating capacity for the availing PWD.

“The free movie privilege granted to the PWD under this ordinance shall be counted as cinema’s corporate social responsibility program,” the ordinance said.


Anyone who commits fraudulent means to avail of the free movie privilege will be penalized with a fine of P2,000 for the first offense, P3,000 for the second offense, and P5,000 for the third offense.

Citation tickets will be issued to violators, the Davao City information office said.

banner photo courtesy: NCCC Mall Facebook

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