Rep. PJ Garcia files bill that seeks to abolish height requirement for PNP, BFP, BJMP recruits

By: Rosalie O. Abatayo July 28,2019 - 09:36 AM

The current minimum height requirement for the PNP, BJMP and BFP recruitment process is set at 162 cm for male applicants and 157 cm for female applicants.

CEBU CITY, Philippines — Representative Pablo John “PJ” Garcia of Cebu’s third district has filed a bill in Congress that seeks to abolish the height requirement for those seeking to join the Philippine National Police (PNP), Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) and the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP).

According to Garcia, “height, or the lack thereof, should not be a hindrance to serving the people as (being) police, fire or jail officers.”

House Bill No. 2242 or the “PNP, BFP and BJMP Height Equality Bill” seeks to repeal provisions of existing laws that set the minimum height requirements for applicants in the police, fire, and jail management services.

Republic Act 6975 of the Department of Interior and Local Government Act of 1990 mandates that females who seek employment in the PNP should at least be 157 centimeters or five feet, two inches tall while male applicants should be at least 162 centimeters or five feet, four inches tall.

Republic Act 9263 of the Bureau of Fire Protection and Bureau of Jail Management and Penology Professionalization Act of 2004 also set the same requirements for the two bureaus.

​“There is absolutely no empirical evidence that people who possess the mandated minimum height would be more effective and efficient police, jail or fire officers than those who do not,” Garcia said in his explanatory note on House Bill No. 2242.

Garcia said the recruitment process should focus on the applicants more important qualities and skills like investigation and detection, case buildup, and community relations.

“The height requirement unduly limits the PNP, BFP, and BJMP in their pool of potential recruits. There may be more qualified and competent people worthy of employment who do not qualify simply because they fail to make the height requirement,” said the Cebuano lawmaker.

Garcia first sought to abolish the height requirement for PNP, BFP and BJMP applicants during his previous stint as third district representative in 2012. His proposal was approved and consolidated with a counterpart Senate Bill by Senator Gringo Honasan, but it was vetoed by former president Benigno Simeon “Noynoy” Aquino III in 2013.

With his fresh mandate, Garcia again wanted to push for the height requirement abolition.

​“I am seriously apprehensive of the concerns propounded by the PNP and BJMP in the safety of their personnel in the performance of their duties, as well as public safety in general,” Aquino said in his veto message. /dcb

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TAGS: BFP, BJMP, DILG, government service, height requirement, Pj garcia, PNP, recruitment

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