16 Top performing barangays in smoke-free campaign named

BAGUIO CITY  – Sixteen barangays made it to the list of top performing communities in the implementation of the city’s smoke-free campaign.

The outstanding barangay performers are Lopez Jaena, Andres Bonifacio (Lower Bokawkan), Upper Market Subd., Palma Urbano (Cariño-Palma), Middle Rock Quarry, Poliwes, Irisan (San Carlos Heights), ABCR, T. Alonzo, Gibraltar, Camdas Subd., Lower Quirino Hill, Middle Quirino Hill, West Quirino Hill and Camp Allen.

The Smoke-Free Baguio Task Force headed by Mayor Benjamin Magalong said these barangays have been actively enforcing the smoke-free programs in their areas of jurisdiction thus earned the “green” badge, the highest level of achievement. 

Smoke-Free Project Team Leader Cecille Agpawa said these barangays have approved ordinances adopting Ordinance No. 34-2017 or the Smoke-Free Baguio Ordinance and have been extensively conducting compliance monitoring and information-education-communication (IEC) activities.

A total of 37 barangays meanwhile earned the “yellow” badge, the second best list while 27 made it to the “blue” list, the third best.

Forty-nine barangays landed on the “red” zone for not being able to implement the smoke-free program.

Agpawa said that out of the city’s 128 barangays, only 21 barangays have approved ordinances adopting the implementation of Ordinance No. 34-2017, 70 conducted at least one compliance monitoring visit or monitored establishments and others; 18 issued citation tickets to violators; and 55 conducted IEC activities.

In 2021, the task force targets to implement a merit system for the smoke-free program implementation.

Agpawa said this aims to give incentives to barangays performing well in the anti-smoking campaign and encourage those that are lagging behind to do better with the end in view of making the program sustainable.

The barangays’ performances will be measured based on the criteria and scoring system set.  The criteria follow the MPOWER measures of the World Health Organization – Monitor Tobacco Use and Prevention polices; Protect; Offer Quit; Warn on the Dangers of Tobacco; Enforce Ban on Tobacco Advertising; and Raise Taxes on Tobacco.

The merit system will award best performing barangays  with incentives and plaques of recognition.

Barangays have been instrumental in the success of the anti-smoking program in the city.

Because of its effective anti-smoking campaign, the city has so far been awarded the prestigious Red Orchid plum for two consecutive years.  The Red Orchid award is the highest national honor given to localities on smoke-free front.

The program has so far contributed P9M in penalty collections from violation of the Smoke-Free Baguio City ordinance to the city coffers from January 2018 to December 10, 2020. – Aileen P. Refuerzo