Executive Order No. 26

Executive Order No. 26 (EO 26) providing for the establishment of smoke-free environments in public and enclosed places became effective on July 23, 2017.

Among others, EO 26 imposes the following prohibitions:

1. Smoking within enclosed public places and public conveyances, whether stationary or in motion, except in DSAs fully compliant with the standards provided by law;

2. For persons-in-charge to allow, abet, or tolerate smoking in places where it is not allowed (DSAs not fully compliant with the law);

3. For any person to sell, distribute, or purchase tobacco products to and from minors;

4. For a minor to smoke, buy, or sell cigarettes or any other tobacco products;

5. Ordering, instructing or compelling a minor to use, light up, buy, sell, distribute, deliver, advertise, or promote tobacco products;

6. Selling or distributing tobacco products in or within 100 meters of any place frequented by minors;

7. Placing, posting, displaying, or distributing advertisement and promotional materials of tobacco products, such as but not limited to leaflets, posters, display, structures, and other materials within 100 meters from the perimeter of places usually frequented by minors or in an establishment when such establishment or its location is prohibited from selling tobacco products;

8. Placing any form of tobacco advertisement outside of the premises of point-of-sale retail establishments; and

9. Placing any stall, booth, and other displays concerning tobacco promotions to areas outside the premises of point-of-sale locations or adult-only facilities

EO 26 also implements strict guidelines on designated smoking areas (DSAs). It provides that all DSAs shall strictly comply with the following standards:

1. There shall be no opening that will allow air to escape from the DSA to the smoke-free area of the building or conveyance, except for a single door equipped with an automatic door closer; provided that, if the DSA is not located in an open space, such door shall open directly towards a Non-Smoking Buffer Zone (Buffer Zone);

2. The DSA shall not be located in or within 10 meters from entrances, exits or any place where people pass or congregate, or in front of air intake ducts;

3. A DSA and its non-smoking buffer zone shall not be larger than 20% of the total floor area of the building or conveyance, provided that in no case shall such area be less than 10 square meters;

4. No building or conveyance shall have more than one DSA;

5. The ventilation system for the DSA in an enclosed space and its buffer zone shall be independent of all ventilation systems servicing the rest of the building or conveyance;

6. Minors shall not be allowed in DSAs and Buffer Zone;

7. DSAs shall have the following signages highly visible and prominently displayed:

a. “Smoking Area” signage

b. Graphic health warnings on the effects of tobacco use; and

c. Prohibition on the entry of persons below 18 years old

EO 26 also provides that persons in charge should do the following among others:

1. Prominently post a “No Smoking” sign in locations most visible to the public in the areas where smoking is prohibited (See Section 5, EO 26 for specifications);

2. Prominently post and display the “No Smoking” signage in the most conspicuous location within a public conveyance (See Section 5, EO 26 for specifications);

3. Remove from the places where smoking is prohibited all ashtrays and other receptacles for disposing of cigarette profuse.

For failure to comply with the Executive Order, penal sanctions (fine or imprisonment) shall be imposed.

This article does not constitute and is not intended to be legal advice. If you have any question or need any assistance, please feel free to send us an email at roselle.jean@nonatolaw.com.

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