A Petition for the Full Implementation of Smoking Ban

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Smoking up until now is a problem that everyone especially non-smokers want to resolve. Smoke or smoking is not only bad for the environment but also to the people. Smoking can cause many diseases to the user and it also affects nearby people by exposing them to secondhand smoke. Although smoking bans have been implemented in the past, some are still not following the law like using the designated areas for smoking. You can still see people smoking in public places like in public vehicles, parks, or even in the busy streets, you can see them smoking while walking. We want to address this problem not because we want to stop smokers for doing what they want, but for the sake of the people and the environment. We are affected by these actions without a choice, and we have the right to fight for what is right for the majority. Everyone has a part on this, especially the local governments because they have the power. They should check the surrounding areas if smoking ban is being implemented.

For the poor implementation of smoking ban in the Philippines, here are our proposed solutions:

1. The government should remind people where are the smoking bans located. Even if there are now designated areas for smoking in our country, smokers still tend to disobey and smoke in public places, like food courts, public vehicles, outside schools and hospitals, and even while walking. And there should be bigger signs in smoking areas for people to see where should they smoke, not just a short bond paper with “smoking area” written on it. There are also no boundaries and limits in smoking area, usually we see a smoking area on an open space that people do not usually go through, but because of its exposure to the environment, the smoke from the cigarette can still go out in the open, so smoking areas should be enclose and ventilated properly for the safety of the smokers as well.

2. Selling cigarettes in random public places should also be banned. We usually see this scenario inside jeepneys, where cigarette sellers or what we call “takatak” are usually seen. They are vendors who carry a small wooden box which contains cigarettes, lighters, and candies for the smokers. The usual buyer of these vendors are the jeepney drivers. Once the jeepney drivers start to smoke while driving, many people will be affected, particularly their passengers, because they will be more exposed to second hand smoking, that will affect their health. They should be banned in order for jeepney drivers not to be tempted to buy and smoke while driving, which they should only do when they are on a break. For the street vendors who sells cigarettes, they should build a small convenience store and sell near the smoking areas so that smokers will be invited to smoke only in smoking areas.

3. Vaping is not an exemption. Yes, we know that the vape, or the electric cigarettes, is one of the most effective way to quit smoking cigarettes because it gives you the sensation of blowing a smoke, minus the unhealthy nicotine, but not all the time. An E-Cigarette juice can now contain nicotine, which is one of the main components of cigarettes that damages the health, but gives an amazing sensation to our body. If people smoke vape with nicotine in public places, it doesn’t have a difference when you use cigarettes. Although some vapes are not loaded with nicotine, for the safety of the non-users we suggest that vape users should be provided a separate area for using their smoking material. They should have a different area, separated from cigarette smoking area because using vape is not as dangerous as using cigarettes, so if you put vapers and smokers together in one isolated area, people who vape without nicotine and people who tries to quit smoking will be affected because they will still be affected and they might be tempted to go back to smoking cigarettes again.