Since the implementation of the National Smoking Ban (Executive Order 26) last July 23 2017 (Sunday), as ordered by President Rodrigo Roa Duterte, sales of tobacco cigarettes has dropped down.
Some sidewalk vendors admitted that the cigarette sale is now slow in business.
As for another sidewalk vendor, she stopped selling smoke for good since Monday (July 24, 2017) and she also told reporters that she even interrogates some who she caught smoking near here area.
The Order was approved last May which indicated no smoking areas in public places, both indoor and outdoor.
Other actions covered as unlawful under this new order are selling or buying tobacco products by minor, smoking, instructing a minor to buy, sell and smoke tobacco products, distributing products in a public playground or school. It also includes sporting areas, sidewalks, restaurants, workplaces, government offices, and other establishments. Public conveyances are also off limits, such as planes, ships, taxicabs, buses, tricycles, trains, elevators and other similar vehicles. Smoking in private vehicles in public places is prohibited.
This implementation of the ban is a realization of President Duterte’s “dream of a tobacco free future.”
The 2003 Tobacco Regulation Act which is strictly implemented by the order, allows for the founding of areas purposely designated as smoking areas but with firm, flexible criteria to be imposed for these locations
These areas should not have any openings that would allow air to escape, excluding a single door provided with an automatic closer. These locations should not be anywhere 10 meters from exits and entrances of places where crowds pass or gather or near air ducts.
President Duterte himself, who was a heavy smoker before, abandoned the habit years ago after he begun to suffer from health issues. Having served as a mayor for decades in the southern City of Davao, the similar ban was imposed by Duterte.
A smoke-free task force was also created to serve as the implementing body, with the help of the Philippine National Police and active volunteers.
Meanwhile, the Department of Health (DOH) hoped for more Filipinos to quit the smoking vice after the ban took effect.
For those who wish to quit smoking, they may request counseling from the DOH Quit Line according to the Agency as stated under the Executive Order 26, stating that the Department of Health is entrusted to create cessation clinics to assist persons who want to stop smoking.
The Quit Line was launched last June at the Lung Center of the Philippines in Quezon City
According to DOH Spokesperson Eric Tayag, as for the meantime they have put up Quit line which can operate likely as Cessation clinics.