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PIA Press Release

Davao gets award for anti-smoking efforts

By Mai Gevera

Davao City (5 January) -- Davao City is cited as the only city to get the Global Smoke-Free Partnership Award along with other countries such as India, Guatemala, and Turkey.

Task Force on Anti-smoking chairperson Dr. Domilyn Villariz announced this achievement in yesterday's Kapihan sa Dabaw and called it as one of the fruits of the strict implementation of the anti-smoking ordinance in the city.

The task force recorded 1,193 violators in 2009, totaling to 9,244 apprehended violators since the start of the implementation in November 2002.

Villariz noted that the significant reduction of mortality due to lung cancer can be attributed to the strong will power of the anti-smoking task force. From 113 deaths in 2008, the Department of Health recorded only 38 deaths in 2009 and only 104 persons got sick due to lung problem.

The task force also strictly released permits for smoking rooms as a form of discouragement to people from smoking in public places like restaurants. Last year, only nine establishments were given approval to have their specific smoking rooms.

The TF chair also reminds establishments that the group is strict in monitoring the display of articles or the name of cigarette products as this is a form of advertisement.

"We are strict in sending notices to establishments caught displaying parasol, tissue holder, doors, and other articles with the name of a cigarette product." Around 25 establishments were already warned for this kind of violation. Most of those sent with notices had immediately complied with the order.

Villariz hopes that the next city mayor would still continue the support for anti-smoking efforts.

"We have already made a mark in the field of anti-smoking, we just hope that there's no turning back anymore even with a new administration," she said. (PIA XI) [top]

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