February 24, 2024

The first visually-impaired Bar passer in the Philippines is now employed at the Department of Social Welfare and Development central office.

Anthony Mark Emocling is working as a legislative liaison specialist detailed under the Department Legislative Liaison Office (DLLO). He was hired on “cost of service” basis, which is usually 12 months but can renewed. 

Emocling of the University of Baguio School of Law was one of the 3,992 who passed the 2022 Bar examination.

He has been with the agency for about a month now, said Asec. for Legislative Affairs Irene Dumlao, who is also Emocling’s immediate supervisor.

In an earlier interview with the Midland Courier, Emocling said he wants to focus on human rights and “fight for the marginalized,” once he begins practicing as a lawyer.

And this indeed happened when he was hired by the DSWD. Emocling told the Midland Courier he first applied in the DSWD in Baguio but the only available vacant position for his qualifications was at the central office.

He pursued his application and got hired. “At least I will be able to apply what I learned. Isu nga talaga ti kayat ko (This is what I really wanted),” Emocling said in a phone interview, narrating he is enjoying working and attending the sessions in the House of Representatives. He also was able to easily adjust as some of the staff were his classmates in law school.

Emocling’s employment in the DSWD is his first job. His exposure to a work environment in the past was mostly voluntary.

Emocling and his mother are staying in a dormitory for employees at the DSWD Compound in Quezon City. On weekends, he and his mother explore the different areas of the National Capital Region and they also visit a relative who is based in Taguig City.  

The DLLO is in charge of the DSWD legislative agenda and other proposed legislative measures identified as urgent by the executive department through collaboration with both Houses of Congress, as well as with other interest groups.

In the current 19th Congress, priority legislative agenda of the DLLO are the Social Welfare and Development Agencies bill, Public Solicitation bill, Community-Driven and Development Institutionalization bill, Crisis Intervention Program bill; and Child Support Responsibi-lity bill.

The DLLO also assists in the crafting or refining of related bills lodged by other agencies such as the Magna Carta of Child Development Workers bill, amendments to the 4Ps Law, amendments to the Magna Carta for Public Social Workers, Magna Carta of Children, Prevention of Child and Adolescent Pregnancy, Internet and Digital Content Safety and Online Protection for Children, Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Services for Children and Young Adolescents Du-ring Times of Public Health Emergency, Additional Protection to Women and Children, full implementation of the Juvenile Justice Welfare Act, Monthly Social Pension for Indigent Persons with Disability/Disability Support Fund bill, and creation of the National Commission on Disability Affairs, among others. – Rimaliza A. Opiña