By Charina Clarisse Echaluce
Private establishments were reminded by an anti-smoking group that they are not mandated to provide Designated Smoking Areas (DSAs).
The New Vois Association of the Philippines (NVAP) told the owners of private establishments that having no DSA is not a violation of Executive Order No. 26, which banned smoking in public places nationwide.
“We applaud private entities and companies who opted to go 100-percent smoke-free and not to have any DSAs in their respective premises. And they do not have any reason to think that they are breaking the law if they are getting complaints,” NVAP president Emer Rojas said.
“They just need to be reminded that they are not obliged or required to have DSAs if they choose not to,” he added.
A DSA is defined as “an area of a building or conveyance where smoking may be allowed, which may be in an open space or separate area with proper ventilation subject to the specific standards”.
Rojas said private establishments even have the discretion to further enhance the provisions of EO 26 and may include e-cigarettes.
“The EO actually allows them to impose stricter anti-smoking policies if they want to. Airlines prohibit smoking as well as the use of e-cigarettes while inside an airplane,” he noted.