DAVAO CITY- Its Republic Act 9211 and City Ordinance No. 143, or the Tobacco Regulation Act of 2003 or the City’s comprehensive anti-smoking ordinance had known Davao City worldwide. This law prohibits anyone to smoke in public utility vehicle, government-owned vehicle or any other means of public transport for passengers, accommodation and entertainment establishment, public building, public place, enclosed public place, or in any enclosed area outside of ones private residence, private place of works, cars owned by the government or duly designated smoking areas, within the jurisdiction of Davao City.
The violators of this ordinance shall and will be subject to fine not less than Php500. 00 or imprisonment of not less than one month. This ordinance was passed by the 13th council of Davao City and has been approved by former Mayor Rodrigo R. Duterte, vice mayor today. Because of this Davao City became famous and became site for the study of foreign nationals which they are also starting the implementation banning the smoking to their country. According to Dr.
Domilyn C.Villareiz, co –chairman, Anti-smoking Task Force in his interview to Manila Times that they had been receiving visitors from other countries in order to observe the implementation of the ban of smoking in the city with their recent visitors from Hanoi, Vietnam, and from Thailand. Anti-smoking of Davao city also gains recognition from different bodies and organization. In fact, the anti-smoking of the City was awarded by International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease (IUATLD) in its 40th World Congress at Mexico last December 2009 for its unwavering commitment anti smoking policies in the country.That is why the Anti-smoking Task Force (ASTF) continues complying the strict implementation of this ordinance with no further allowance and exemption. But despite of the strict implementation of anti-smoking there are still many people have been caught violating this ordinance. Last 2010,Davao City’s Anti smoking task force caught a total number of 394 violators of the anti-smoking law and has been arrested between June and October 2010.
Dr.Domilyn Villareiz said from an interview of Sunstar Davao last June 2010 that the figure shows a slight decrease from the number of arrests made during the same period last year, which was at 478. “But still this is still very alarming” she added. That is why they drafted a new provision for an ordinance promoting 100 percent smoke-free establishments in the city.
It will be base this on the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC). This is the first treaty negotiated under the auspices of the World Health Organization.It was adopted by the World Health Assembly on 21 May 2003 and entered into force on 27 February 2005.
It has since become one of the most widely embraced treaties in UN history. The WHO FCTC was developed in response to the globalization of the tobacco epidemic and is an evidence-based treaty that reaffirms the right of all people to the highest standard of health. The Convention represents a milestone for the promotion of public health and provides new legal dimensions for international health cooperation.As the country is among the signatories of the treaty. Source FCTC website. The local ordinance will amend provisions of the current Anti-Smoking Ordinance that prohibits smoking in public areas and requires permits for private establishments to be able to create smoking rooms. It will also be pushing for the prohibition of smoking in private establishment.
“We are looking at making our city 100 cigarette smoke-free in all establishments. We are pushing that there should also be no allowance to have smoking rooms.This is to comply with the FTCT, which is an international treaty for tobacco control,” she said in his interview to Sunstar Davao.
She also said that they had an oath taking of representative from the focal points of the government and women’s groups, in line with our campaign for a stronger resistance from the women as we feel that tobacco companies have intensified their advertorials directed at women. Because they notice that there are color pink and orange to the boxes of cigarette. This is to invite the women and girls to smoke.Villareiz also said that ASTF is strongly calling for the compliance of Department of Health Executive Order 13, which called for the printing of physical smoking effects on cigarette boxes. “We are supporting the administrative order because having visuals on the packaging of cigarettes, this would be a huge help to raise the smokers’ consciousness on the consequences or health risks they are about to take.
Visuals are extremely helpful especially to the youth and those who cannot read. Having word warnings is not enough,” Villareiz said.