Duterte signs law recognizing foundlings as natural-born Filipinos
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte has signed into law a measure providing “greater protections” to deserted and abandoned children with unknown parents.
Under Republic Act No. 11767, an orphan found in the Philippines or in its embassies, consulates, and territories abroad is presumed a natural-born Filipino citizen regardless of the status or circumstances of the child’s birth.
As a natural-born Filipino, a foundling is entitled to rights and protections at the moment of birth, according to the new law.
It also ensures that a certificate of live birth will be issued to the orphan without delay and that the foundling has the right to access all the documentary requirements submitted for registration.
The new law also exempts from criminal liability parents who relinquish an infant 30 days old and younger to “safe haven” providers.
Safe haven providers include licensed child-caring or -placing agencies, churches, Department of Health-accredited health facilities, local social welfare and development offices, and Department of Social Welfare and Development- or local government unit-managed residential care facilities.
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