The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) affirmed that failure to present a Senior Citizen Identification Card (SC ID) issued by the Office of Senior Citizens Affairs (OSCA) is not a ground for non-availment of discount privileges under Republic Act (RA) No. 9994 or the Expanded Senior Citizens Act of 2010.
DSWD explained that in the absence of an identification card issued by OSCA, they can show other government-issued identification documents listed in the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) that show their age and/or birthdate such as a driver’s license, voters ID, SSS/GSIS ID, PRC card, and postal ID, among others.
Moreover, as RA 9994 is meant to benefit Filipino elderly, availing senior citizens must also be able to prove their Filipino citizenship and actual residency in the country, hence the need to present the above-mentioned identification documents.
The National Coordinating and Monitoring Board (NCMB), an inter-agency committee chaired by the DSWD and tasked to monitor the implementation of the law, stands by its previous policy of giving premium, as much as possible, to the OSCA-issued SC ID cards, as provided under Rule IV, Article 6 of the IRR.
The provision was specifically included to prevent abuse of the discount privileges, and as a means of monitoring the senior citizens population benefitting from the law.
Reiterating the agreements reached by various stakeholders during the drafting of the IRR in 2010, the general rule is that OSCA-issued SC ID cards are to be used in the availment of benefits.
However, in case the senior citizen inadvertently fails to present the OSCA ID, but is able to show another government-issued ID, businesses must still grant the discount privilege, especially for purchases of basic necessities.Member agencies of the NCMB are the Departments of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Health (DOH) and Justice (DOJ), Department of Trade and Industry-Bureau of Trade Regulation and Consumer Protection (DTI-BTRCP), as well as non-government organizations advocating for senior citizens’ welfare, such as Federation of Senior Citizens Association of the Philippines (FSCAP), Coalition of Services for the Elderly (COSE), Alliance of Retired Postal Employees and Senior Citizens (ARPES), Lousie de Marillac Foundation, and St. Vincent Foundation for Children and Aging, Inc.