Smoke-free Iloilo City sought

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Friday, January 31, 2014


THE Iloilo City Anti-Smoking Task Force (Icast) is steadfast in implementing its mandate of not allowing smoking in all public places including the non-operation of special smoking area in restaurants and bars.

“Definitely, we are making the city a smoke-free area and even tourists are not allowed to smoke here,” city councilor and Icast Chairman Joshua Alim said.

The City Council has passed Regulation Ordinance 2013-348 last September 10, 2013 by amending certain provisions of the “Ordinance providing for a comprehensive anti-smoking ordinance in the city of Iloilo and for other purposes.”

The amended ordinance also provides prohibited acts by an individual and administrative violation. These prohibited acts include smoking or using electronic devise system in schools compound, public buildings, public conveyances and government owned vehicles, locations in which fire hazards are present, within 100 meters of the surrounding premises of hospitals, medical, dental, optical clinics and pharmacies, accommodation such as hotels, motels and the likes, restaurants, bars, disco houses and other entertainment establishments, private workplace open to the general public, public places where 10 or more persons convened, waiting shed and any area owned by the government and declared by the city mayor thru an executive order as a no smoking area or place.

Alim said the prohibited acts or administrative violations include no signage of No smoking in the entrance and inside of the establishment, providing ash trays within the No smoking Area, designating smoking area within the building, selling and allowing minors to smoke in their establishment, non-declaration in the business Permit indicating that the establishment is a smoke-free establishment, allowing smoking during events, selling cigarettes in front of schools within 100 meters, selling of cigarettes within the 20-meter perimeter of recreational activities, hospitals, medical clinics, pharmacies and laboratories, and NO Smoking signage on public utility vehicle.

Penalties were also added to violators from the old ordinance. The amended ordinance provides fine of P500 and or 24 hours community work and or 3 days imprisonment at the discretion of the court for first offense; a fine of P1,000 and or 48 hours community work and or 5 days imprisonment for the second offense; and a fine of P5,000 and or 60 hours community work and or 10 days imprisonment.

Policemen are likewise not allowed to smoke in public and while on duty, Alim added.

The amended city ordinance also declared JM Basa Street and Iznart Street as “No Smoking Streets”, for reason these streets are highly populated and considered as a heritage area and tourism destination.

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