DOJ to probe Cebu resort for child ‘discrimination’
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Justice (DOJ) will launch its own investigation into the alleged discriminatory policies of an upscale resort in Cebu province after a complaint of a mother of a 6-year-old boy with autism went viral on social media, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said on Friday.
Guevarra said he had already received the letter of Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat seeking the DOJ’s assistance in looking into the possible violations of the employees and management of Plantation Bay Resort and Spa in Lapu-Lapu City.
“As chief enforcer of the Magna Carta for Disabled Persons, the DOJ will conduct a parallel investigation of [this] incident,” Guevarra told reporters.
He was referring to Republic Act No. 7277, which guaranteed the protection of rights and privileges of persons with physical disabilities and special needs.
It also imposed a prison term of up to six years on individuals found to have violated the law.
Puyat earlier said the Department of Tourism was conducting an inquiry into the complaint of Mai Pages, who posted on the travel booking website Tripadvisor their unfortunate experience while staying at Plantation Bay.
In a now-deleted comment on Tripadvisor, Manny Gonzalez, the resort’s resident stakeholder, accused Pages of “most likely deliberately lying” or had been given an incorrect diagnosis of autism.