Tarlac City, Tarlac – In compliance to the recent mandate of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte directing all Local Government Units (LGUs) to provide for the establishment of Smoke-Free Environments in public and enclosed places (Executive Order No. 16 dated May 16, 2017), the City Government of Tarlac had its 1st Coordination Meeting last August 3, 2017 so as to effect the implementation of said directive.

The City Administrator Office under the leadership of Atty. Numer P. Lobo, presided over the meeting, which was attended by all proposed members of the Smoke-Free Task Force of Tarlac City, composed of the following agencies, to wit: DILG, PNP, DOH, POSO, Sanggunian Panlungsod representative, CENRO, Provincial Administrator's Office and Liga ng mga Barangay representative.

Highlights of the meeting are the discussion on the (1) Draft Executive Order of the Local Chief Executive (Mayor Cristy Angeles); (2) Organization of the Smoke-Free Task Force and their Functions; (3) Information-Education Campaign Materials and Signages; (4) Penalties for Violations/Prohibited Acts; (5) DOH Smoking Cessation Program and (6) Citation Ticket.

Basically, the salient features of E.O. 26 were further reviewed by the body, which underscored the prohibition of smoking inside enclosed areas and as well as minimize access particularly of minors to tobacco products.

In this realization, it was explicitly stated in the said mandate that there is an impending need to intensify existing measures on access restriction, including the regulation of sales, distribution and availability of cigarettes and other tobacco products, as prescribed under the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC).

As an urgent response, the City Government of Tarlac took its first step through this undertaking, in order to enforce necessary actions that would create a Smoke-Free City while protecting and uplifting the right of the people to public health.
Meanwhile, series of coordination meeting for this purpose will be held until the LCE's Executive Order be finalized and carried into order.