Pubdate: Mon, 23 Oct 2006
Source: Visayan Daily Star (Philippines)
Copyright: 2006 Visayan Daily Star
Author: Rene Genvoe


Starting this December or January next year, people in Dumaguete City 
wearing T-shirts, baseball caps or backpacks with printed images of 
illegal drugs will be apprehended and either fined or imprisoned.

The ban will start once the proposed ordinance authored by Councilor 
Noel de Jesus is approved.

De Jesus, in his resolution, said the local government unit has the 
duty to protect the morality of society, particularly the youth, 
against the eroding influence of drug abuse.

He said many parents and other concerned people are in consternation 
especially during trade fairs or annual celebrations, when items or 
things that display pictures and emblems of certain dangerous drugs 
or illegal substances are sold indiscriminately.

De Jesus said "Many have seen and grumbled at the brazenness of some 
expensive motor vehicles plying the city streets whose sides or 
tinted windows are posted with stickers bearing the picture or design 
of marijuana leaf."

He added that even motorcabs-for-hire roaming the city also display 
the graphic images. The symbols are also seen on T-shirts, jewelry, 
baseball caps, backpacks, scarves and other materials that people 
wear suggesting a total disregard of prudence and serves mainly to 
glorify the use of prohibited drugs, De Jesus pointed out.

But there are exceptions when the display of images or symbols of 
dangerous drugs is allowed.

These are when the image bears a caption that identifies the 
substance as dangerous drugs; if it is used for scientific pursuit 
and educational exercises; and during dangerous drugs education 
campaigns, De Jesus said.

The fine ranges between P500 and P1,000 for the first offense, a 
60-day community service for the second offense, and both fine and 
imprisonment of not less than six months for the third offense.

De Jesus said proprietors or managers of commercial or business 
establishments found violating the ordinance will also be held liable.
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