Issue of June 9, 2019
Mt. Province

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Community task force hold first smoke-free gab
by Aileen P. Refuerzo / PIO

The Community Smoke-Free Task Force of Aurora Hill conducted the first barangay forum on the Smoke-Free Baguio City Ordinance hosted by Lopez Jaena, one of the city’s two model barangays in the implementation of the smoke-free campaign.

The conference, dubbed, “Kapihan sa Barangay” aimed to further enlighten residents and deputized enforcers in the Aurora Hill-Quirino Hill health district on the provisions of the ordinance and to identify solutions to the issues arising from the implementation of the measure.

Members of the Baguio City Smoke-Free Task Force led by Councilor Joel Alangsab, Smoke-Free Project team leader Cecille Agpawa, Smoke-Free Philippines/Vital Strategies Communication Manager Carlos Garcia, Health Service Office Aurora Hill-Quirino Hill Medical Officer Marie Therese Sumbello, and Police Station 6 Commander Capt. Luis Dangatan, Jr. presented the status and prospects of the campaign. 

Lopez Jaena Punong Barangay Carlos Asiatico related his experience and transformation from being a chain smoker back in the ‘70s to ‘80s to a staunch anti-smoking advocate barangay leader today.

His barangay shares with DPS barangay the feat as the first model barangays for the exemplary performance of their smoke-free functions.

Alangsab stressed the need to establish more community task forces and challenged barangay officials to become tobacco and vape-free advocates for the sake of their constituents.

During the open forum, barangay officials and members of the barangay peace and order action teams and representatives from the barangay business, transport, and senior citizens groups clarified the provisions of the ordinance to guide them in the more effective implementation of the measure.

Apart from Asiatico, the other barangay heads present were punong barangays Anselm Tao-iy of West Quirino Hill, Teresita Vara of North Central Aurora Hill, Tess Pacleb of South Central Aurora Hill, and Federico Yumul of West Modernsite, among others.

Recently, the Smoke-Free Task Force lauded the enthusiasm and dedication of the deputized barangay officials in the campaign which Dr. Donnabel Tubera, tobacco control officer of the City Health Services Office, said is key to achieving the campaign’s goal of making tobacco control programs in the city sustainable.

In October last year, Mayor Domogan commissioned the 128 barangays through their deputized smoke-free point persons to become part of the 16 community task forces to act as enforcers in an effort to decentralize the implementation of the Smoke-Free Ordinance.

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