Monday, September 27, 2010

Penang to be ‘smoke-free’ state - The Star

GEORGE TOWN: Smoking will only be allowed in gazetted areas under a proposal by the state government to make Penang “smoke free”. If such a proposal gets the nod from the Health Ministry, it will certainly give smokers in the state a “harder” time. State Health, Welfare, Caring Society and Environment Committee chairman Phee Boon Poh said it had handed the proposal to the Health Ministry.
“Instead of gazetting non-smoking areas, we have proposed to the ministry for the situation to be reversed. We will gazette the areas where people can smoke.
“We want to encourage the people to discipline themselves, rather than using laws alone to solve the problem,” he said, adding that the proposal was aimed at creating a healthier state.


“This step does not discriminate against the smokers’ right. However, we are concerned about them and their family’s health,” he said after flagging off a walkathon organised by the Penang Adventist Hospital.
Consumer groups welcomed the proposal, describing it as the right move towards a healthier society.
Fomca secretary-general Muhd Sha’ani Abdullah said Penang could implement the smoke-free rule in municipal areas under the Local Government Act.

“They can declare smoke-free areas in all business premises and hotel rooms using the council’s licensing powers,” he said.

Consumers Association of Penang president S. M. Mohd Idris urged the state government to put up banners about the pictorial warning on cigarette packs within school compound and outside places of worship.

“The banners should be put up in primary schools to warn pupils about the dangers of smoking so that they don’t pick up the habit,” he said. Idris said although the Botanical Gardens here was a no-smoking zone, many people, especially tourists, were seen puffing away.

 
Sentuhan Bayu : I really welcome this. Selangor State Government should follow this as well. :)
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