Articles worth reading

Metro Manila athletes win SEA Games medals

account_balanceMetro Manila access_time4 days ago

Several athletes from the National Capital Region (NCR) won medals in the ongoing Southeast Asian Games. The City Government of Makati cheered as University of Makati (UMAK) alumni, Mark Jayson Gayon and UMAK student, Mary Joy Renigen won the gold m...

Newly installed x-ray machines at MICP

Customs adds two x-ray machines at MICP

account_balanceMetro Manila access_time4 days ago

The Bureau of Customs has installed two Portal-type x-ray machines at the Manila International Container Port (MICP). The new Portal x-ray machines will increase the Bureau’s maximum x-ray inspection capacity at MICP with an additional 7,680 c...

Sea Games 2019

Filipino gold medalists in SEAG to get incentives

account_balanceMetro Manila access_time5 days ago

The House of Representatives apprived additional incentives to Filipino gold medalists in the 30th Southeast Asian Games. The chamber adopted House Resolution No. 568, which seeks to collect and deduct the individual pledges of congressmen from...

Metro Manila News

vaping to be legal

Filipino vapers laud Quebec court’s decision rejecting anti-vaping law provisions

account_balanceMetro Manila chat_bubble_outline0 Comments

LOCAL vaping groups welcomed the Superior Court of Quebec’s recent decision rejecting key sections of the Tobacco Control Act adopted by the Quebec government in 2015, which sought to treat vaping products essentially the same as cigarettes. 

In his decision handed down on May 3, 2019 Justice Daniel Dumais accepted that cigarette smoking is a significant cause of preventable illness and death and declared that the evidence presented convinced the court that electronic cigarettes have been shown to be effective, for some people, in their efforts to quit smoking. 

The court was also convinced, in accordance with evidence presented, that using electronic cigarettes is less harmful to health than ordinary cigarettes; that it is better to vape than to smoke tobacco; and that vaping is a valid method to quit smoking.

The decision recognizes vaping as a form of harm reduction as it allows people who would otherwise smoke lethal cigarettes to get the nicotine they need or want without the inhalation of smoke. 

As the harm from cigarette use is overwhelmingly due to the inhalation of smoke rather than the nicotine, the decision underscores important lessons for harm reduction. 

The Quebec Superior Court is the highest trial Court in the province of Quebec in Canada. 

It is composed of 157 justices, including a Chief Justice, a Senior Associate Chief Justice, and an Associate Chief Justice. 

This recent development prompted the Philippine E-Cigarette Industry Association (PECIA) led by its president, Joey Dulay to air their groups plea for 

the Philippine Health department to consider the "emerging evidence supporting tobacco harm reduction and to be mindful of consumer rights".

"Like Quebec’s anti-vaping law, the recent Department of Health administrative order considers e-cigarettes as essentially the same as cigarettes, Dulay said in a statement sent to Metro News Central. 

Dulay is referring to DOH A.O. No. 2019-0007 released on June 14, 2019 which, among others, bans any form of advertising, promotion and sponsorship of vaping products; bans vaping in places where smoking is prohibited; sets guidelines and requirements for designated vaping areas that are identical with those for designated smoking areas; and prohibits the purchase, sale and offering for sale of e-cigarettes in places where sale and use of cigarettes are prohibited.

Meanwhile, another vaping group, The Vapers Philippines through its president Peter Paul Dator said that the Quebec court decision "underscores the inviolable right of consumers to be provided with accurate and complete information on and access to all available products so that they are able to make informed choices". 

It is a strong affirmation of the validity of tobacco harm reduction and sets an important legal precedent that will have persuasive value in other countries, including the Philippines,”Dator explained in a statement released to media recently. 

 

Vaping ban is a human rights violation

Among other things, Quebec’s Tobacco Control Act prohibited the promotion of vaping products and banned trials of such products at retailers. 

The Quebec Superior Court declared that these prohibitions prevented cigarette smokers in Quebec from hearing about the health benefits of switching to vaping products, from learning about how to use vaping products and from finding a product that is maximally able to replace their cigarettes.

The court further stated that denying smokers the option of trying vaping products in shops or in clinics is a violation of their rights, depriving them of access to a mechanism designed to reduce their risks and better protect their health. 

The court found that the legislated restrictions ignored the fact that the public, particularly smokers, do not distinguish between smoking and vaping.

In effect, the court acknowledged that it is sometimes necessary to educate and make people aware that vaping exists above all for smokers. 

Thus, those measures that prevented the display and trialing of products in vape shops and the communication of information to cigarette smokers on the relative risks of such products were violations of fundamental rights.

 

Respect human rights, empower consumers

According to Dator, the Quebec court’s decision is part of a global trend of courts striking down measures that seek to limit access to risk reduction strategies. 

He cited a recent Swiss Federal Supreme Court decision that used reasoning similar to the Quebec court decision in striking down a ban on snus, a low risk non-combustible Swedish tobacco product. 

Dator also pointed out that vaping products remain available in the US market as a result of a 2010 ruling by Judge Richard Leon of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia in the Sottera Inc. v. U.S. Food and Drug Administration case.

Dator cited the position of Prof. David Sweanor of the University of Ottawa Centre for Health Law, Policy and Ethics. “Moralistic abstinence-only policies, including those for nicotine, have a long history of being ineffective, undermining human rights and being ultimately overturned by courts. 

Far better to focus on effective rather than dramatic interventions, to seek to empower rather than to punish those at risk and to promote policies that respect human dignity and promote individual human rights.

date_rangeDate Published
4 months ago
shareShare article
folder_openArticle tags
content_copyCategorized under

Share your thoughts with us

Related Articles

Indonesia defeats Brunei in SEA Games men's football 

account_balanceMetro Manila chrome_reader_mode5 days ago

Indonesia defeated Brunei, 8-0, in its bid for a semifinal spot in Group B of the Southeast Asian Games men's football tournament at Biñan Football Stadium Tuesday night. Led by a hat trick from Osvaldo Haay and a brace from Egy Maulana, ...

President Rodrigo Dutert / King Rodriguez

Duterte postpones 2020 barangay elections

account_balanceMetro Manila chrome_reader_mode6 days ago

President Rodrigo Duterte signed into law a measure postponing the barangay (village) and Sangguniang Kabataan (youth council) elections scheduled in May 2020. Duterte signed Republic Act (RA) 11462 or the Postponement of the 2020 Barangay and Sangg...

Margielyn Didal / PNA

Filipino athletes add skateboarding medals in SEA Games

account_balanceMetro Manila chrome_reader_mode3 days ago

Margielyn Didal won another Southeast Asian Games gold medal in the skateboarding evebt at Sigtuna Hall of the Tagaytay International Convention Center. Didal defeated compatriot Christiana Means in the finals to clinch the gold. Means set...

Caloocan City Mayor Oscar Malapitan and Valenzuela City Mayor Rex Gatchalian

Caloocan, Valenzuela deny rumors on series of abductions

account_balanceMetro Manila chrome_reader_mode1 week ago

Caloocan City Mayor Oscar Malapitan and Valenzuela City Mayor Rex Gatchalian denied rumors on abduction cases in the two cities. This followed reports in the media of nine missing persons in Pasay City. Closed-circuit television footage showed that ...

Poverty incidence in Metro Manila falls to 2.3%

account_balanceMetro Manila chrome_reader_mode13 hours ago

Poverty incidence among the population in Metro Manila or the National Capital Region (NCR) fell to 2.3 percent in 2018 from 4.1 percent in 2015, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA). This was the lowest poverty rate among the 17 r...

Farmers Market

Inflation rises slightly to 1.3%

account_balanceMetro Manila chrome_reader_mode3 days ago

Inflation rate slightly picked up to 1.3 percent in November from a 42-month low of 0.7 percent in October, but the government said it is not a cause for concern/ Headline inflation slightly inched up after a five-month slowdown in price i...

Advertisement