#Vapenotsafe #Besafedontvape #Vapingkills

Vaping is the act of inhaling vapor from an electronic cigarette, as a substitute for the real one. It is now popular among the youth, so popular that it has become a public health concern.

Republic Act (RA) 11467 has been enacted, but awaiting implementation, particularly the regulatory provisions for vaping or using e-cigarettes. RA 11467 is a landmark legislation that imposes higher excise taxes on alcohol and e-cigarettes and heated tobacco products (HTPs). The key regulatory provisions of RA 11467 includes the mandate for the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to regulate e-cigarettes, HTP’s, ban on sale to those below 21 years old, and ban on flavors.

Public health advocates met last Thursday, March 5 at Kamuning Bakery Cafe in Quezon City, urging legislation to push RA 11467. “We await the implementation of the rules and regulations, particularly the regulatory provisions for e-cigarettes,” quoted Atty. Benedict Nisperos. “Regulation of its manufacture, importation, sale, packaging, advertising and promotion, distribution, and banning the flavorings of vapor products — these should all be upheld by our lawmakers.

“The age restriction at 21 years of age is crucial to protect our children from addiction to nicotine,” highlighted Dr. Riz Gonzales “Flavors, meanwhile, is what attracts young people to vaping, so these flavors should likewise be banned.”

The panelists also discussed President Duterte’s issuance of Executive Order No.106 which strictly regulates the sale and manufacture of vapes, and prohibiting vaping in public places. “We welcome the President’s commitment to smoke-free public spaces,” said Mr. General Franco.

Active advocates who participated in the forum were: Atty, Benedict Nisperos, of Health Justice Philippines; Dr. Riz Gonzales, of Phlippine Pediatric Society; Ms. Chelsea Hill, of Social Watch Philippines-Youth; Ms. Samantha Eala, from Child Rights Network; Mr. General Franco, of Parents against Vape; Dr. Meliza Carla Agoilo, from JCL Lakambini-Davao; and Ms. Imelda Gocotano, from Philippine Society of Private Midwife Clinic Owners.