May 27, 2024

The Smoke-Free Baguio Task Force has warned online sellers and dropping area operators against selling or accepting for pick-up tobacco products and e-cigarettes or Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS) saying these acts constitute violation of Ordinance 34-2017 or the Smoke-Free Baguio Ordinance.

The task force chaired by Mayor Benjamin Magalong said online sellers are prohibited from selling these products as the sale of such is allowed only in permanent stations in areas specified in the ordinance.

The ordinance also provides sellers must have business permits specifically allowing the sale of such products. 

Dropping areas, on the other hand, must not accept these products from online sellers and deliver the same to the buyers as doing so makes them “necessary participants in the prohibited sale and are equally liable for violation of the ordinance.”

The task force reminded the following acts are prohibited:

Selling of tobacco products and/or ENDS (vape) to and from minors;

Selling or distributing tobacco products and/or ENDS in a school, public playground or other facility frequented by minors, offices of the Department of Health and attached agencies, hospitals and health facilities, or within 100 meters from any point in the perimeter of these places;

Selling of tobacco products and/or ENDS within premises of a government facility;

Selling tobacco products and/or ENDS without a business permit to sell tobacco products or ENDS;

Selling of tobacco products and/or ENDS as individual pieces or per stick/piece;

Selling tobacco products and/or ENDS removed from its original product packaging or without the proper government-regulated and approved health warning;

Selling tobacco products and/or ENDS by ambulant or street vendors, including other mobile or temporary stalls, kiosks, stations or units; and

Selling or distributing of sweets, snacks, toys or any other objects in the form of tobacco products which may appeal to minors.

Violators face the following penalties: sales/access restriction and advertising and promotions ban: first offense – P2,000; second offense – P3,000; third and subsequent offenses – P5,000 or imprisonment for a period not exceeding three months or both at the discretion of the court.

Establishments are also liable to suspension and cancellation of business permit and suspension or revocation of license to sell, or permit to operate any establishments/license of public conveyances. – Aileen P. Refuerzo