ILOILO CITY, Iloilo - The Department of Health (DoH) has awarded the Iloilo City local government unit (LGU) for its anti-smoking campaign efforts.
The city garnered the DoH's Red Orchid Award for having scored 100% in implementing a tobacco-free environment through the Iloilo City Anti-Smoking Task Force (ICAST).
"This is a great honor," beamed Iloilo City Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog. "We have proven that our anti-smoking campaign and advocacies are effective."
The city mayor pointed out that "we made an example of (the Iloilo) City Hall, which we declared a smoke-free zone, prohibiting smoking in all offices and within a 100-meter perimeter radius."
For his part, ICAST chairman, Councilor Joshua Alim said the award is an affirmation of how effective the city government's implementation of the no-smoking ordinance is.
Alim said the target of the city's anti-smoking campaign are minors and college students who have picked up smoking with the aim of making them quit while at a young age.
ICAST director Iñigo Garingalao also applauded establishments in the city which have been "highly" cooperative by designating separate smoking and non-smoking areas in their premises.
The DoT's Red Orchid Award comes with R100,000 worth of medicines for the city government's smoking cessation clinic.
Meanwhile, Iloilo City's Health Office has given assurances that it will intensify its program of offering free counseling and medicines to Ilonggos wanting to quit smoking.