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Paninigarilyo, vaping bilang coping mechanism ng estudyante tutuldukan ng DepEd

MANILA, Philippines – Nais na tuldukan ng Department of Education (DepEd) ang paninigarilyo at vaping bilang isang “coping mechanism” ng ilang kabataan sa pamamagitan ng isang holistic approach.

Sa isang panayam, sinabi ni DepEd assistant secretary Dr. Dexter Galban na ang e-cigarettes, kabilang na ang vapes, ay “no less harmful” kumpara sa mga tobacco product.

“It transmits nicotine into the system. And it can be very, very addictive – if not more addictive – given the fact that you still crave for it, you demand for it. It is something that you feel that you need to function well and to cope with stress,” ayon kay Galban.

“Ang nilalayon ng DepEd [ay] healthy coping mechanisms. We need to create programs and campaigns that will heavily reinforce that they don’t need these products to feel happy, to feel confident, to feel stress-free,” dagdag na wika nito.

Tinuran pa ni Galban na maiban sa mga eskuwelahan, national at local governments, ang mga mag-aaral ay sasanayin na labanan ang paninigarilyo.

“They themselves as more likely the residents of the communities near the school, they can file and push for ordinances whether through their SK (Sangguniang Kabataan) or through their local city government that will impose stricter rules on tobacco and e-cigarette regulation,” ang litaniya nito.

Sinabi pa ni Galban na maglulunsad ang departmento ng mas maraming “sports at mental health programs, better data collection, at networking kasama ang mga kinauukulang ahensiya ng pamahalaan at non-government organizations upang mas maprotektahan ang mga kabataan mula sa bisyo, at ipaalam sa mga na huwag magpadala kung paano ang mga tobacco product ay ibinebenta.

“One of the things that we have to do is to provide additional policy guidelines so that teachers and non-teaching personnel would be more familiar what these products are all about, and how they negatively impact the health and well-being of our learners. Kailangan alam nila kung ano iyong mga produktong ito, ano ang itsura ng mga produktong ito,” ani Galban.

Tinuran pa ni Galban, kailangan na panatilihin ng mga anti-tobacco advocates na malakas ang kanilang mensahe dahil “our opponents here are very adept in marketing”.

“Typically, e-cigarette companies, tobacco companies would use the power of media, power of marketing in order to sell. The targets would be our young learners because they can be seen as replacement smokers, replacement e-cigarette smokers because their life spans are much longer and at the same time, they can provide them more attractive marketing campaigns,” paliwanag nito.

Maliban sa integrasyon o pagsama ng anti-smoking campaign sa “MATATAG” curriculum ng DepEd, nagpalabas ang departmento ng Department Memorandum 111 in 2019, nagbabawal sa paggamit sa e-cigarettes at palakasin nang ganap ang tobacco smoking ban sa mga eskuwelahan at department offices.

Inilarawan ito ni Galban bilang “strong follow-up” sa naunang kautusan kung saan nakalista ang polisiya at alituntunin ukol sa komprehensibong tobacco control na nakapaloob sa school setting.

Ani Galban, mas malakas na policy guidelines ay inaasahan na ipalalabas, “which will combine substance abuse prevention programs of DepEd as these have an impact on the life and well-being of learners.” Kris Jose

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