February 9, 2023

Baguio residents who are engaging in a barter system online were warned not to include tobacco products in their transactions if they do not want to be inconvenienced by lawsuits.
The City Health Services Office (CHSO) has called on those who barter products online not to include cigarettes and vapes in the merchandise to be traded off.
Smoke-Free Baguio Project Manager Cecille Agpawa said while they have engaged with some administrators of barter community pages on Facebook to help the office in the campaign against smoking, there was a need to amplify the campaign since not all barter communities are based in Baguio.
Agpawa said they have requested the administrators of online barter pages to include in their community guidelines that trading off of cigarettes and vapes are not allowed.
She said in Baguio, those who allow tobacco products to be traded off could be penalized under the city’s smoking ban.
Online barter pages usually require those who want to exchange their merchandise to post a photo of the items they want to trade off with other products.
Agpawa said posting of photos of tobacco products can be considered as a form of promotion, which is banned by Ordinance 3 s. 2017 or the Smoke-Free Baguio ordinance.
“Posting of photos of cigarettes or electronic cigarettes is considered a form of advertisement and those who violate can be penalized under our ordinance,” she said.
Those who violate the ban on tobacco advertisement provision are fined P2,000 on first offense; P3,000 on second offense; and P5,000 on third offense.
Barter communities have surfaced on social media as more people resorted to online selling and buying when the government started imposing restrictions in movements to curb the spread of the Covid-19. – Jane B. Cadalig