Smoking is gateway behavior among minors
By Marites A. Macabutas
Tacloban City — Smoking is a gateway behavior, especially among minors.
According to Dr. Gloria Fabrigas, Special Health Projects Coordinator of the City Government of Tacloban, cigarette smoking is a gateway behavior that leads to other indecent activities at the expense of the smoker.
“ When someone smokes, he/she tends to take alcoholic drinks,- which, upon getting drunk, will engage in sex”, said Fabrigas.
This has been proven, Fabrigas said, in the course of their investigation and research, wherein they discovered a 13 year old girl student who got pregnant which started from smoking with “barkadas”, and then to a drinking spree, and finally to pre- marital sex. It is very important for parents to make their children understand the ill effect of smoking and ensuing activities from smoking to keep them from ruining their future such as the teenage pregnancy.
According to Fabrigas, the City Government of Tacloban thru the leadership of Mayor Alfred S. Romualdez is steadfast in various health programs such as the “ Labs ko an Lawas Ko” to make people very conscious of a healthy lifestyle free of smoking and drugs.
Meanwhile, Senior Inspector Ma. Bella Rentuaya, Information Officer, Tacloban City Police Office, said, one of their strategies now is the “ Baktas Patrol”.
According to Rentuaya, “Baktas Patrol” team will roam around the vicinity of schools to monitor all possible illegal acts in and outside school premises. Their task is also to make sure not a single store close to a school sells cigarettes and alcoholic drinks.
Selling cigarettes and alcoholic drinks to minors especially near schools is prohibited under the law, said Rentuaya.