MANILA, Philippines – An international organization has cited the Davao City Anti-Smoking Task Force for its unwavering commitment to promote smoke-free policies in the country.
The task force implements the city government’s stiff campaign against smoking in public places, including government and private offices, malls, churches, bars and public transportation.
The multi-partner initiative Global Smokefree Partnership (GSP) announced recently that the Davao City Anti-Smoking Task Force won the governmental body award category for 2009.
The award was presented at the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease (IUATLD) 40th World Congress in Cancun, Mexico last month.
The Davao task force joined Murli Deora of India, the Turkish National Coalition on Tobacco and multiple sectors of Guatemala and Colombia in the roster of awardees for 2009.
GSP, which has over 300 members worldwide focusing on promoting smoke-free policies, cited the Davao’s strong implementation of the smoking ban which made it the leading city in the Philippines to strictly enforce a comprehensive smoking ban in public places.
GSP cited the city’s anti-smoking task force for its “exceptional leadership and commitment to further smoke-free policies by a governmental agency.”
The GSP partnership is a fusion of American Cancer Society and the Framework Convention Alliance to urge the World Heart Federation and International Union Against Cancer and other organizations to advocate and reinforce anti-tobacco policies.
The anti-smoking task force of Davao City was formed when the local ordinance banning smoking in public places was implemented in 2002, which made it unlawful to smoke or allow smoking in public buildings, vehicles, enclosed and other areas that the local government designated as non-smoking places.
The anti-smoking task force goes around the city and monitors the different establishments for their compliance with the smoking ban. From January to July last year, the task force arrested 690 violators.