ANCE-Togo evaluates smoking ban implementation in public places in Togo

The law n°2010-017 regarding production, marketing, consumption of tobacco and its derivative products and its decree n°2012-046 relative to smoking ban in public places entered into force 4 years ago and needed an assessment to evaluate its implementation. Since two months ANCE-Togo and it partner CTFK (USA) are collaboratively working to do this evaluation which outcomes will be used to influence smoke free policy in Togo.

Indeed, the law n°2010-017 regarding production, marketing, consumption of tobacco and its derivative products and its decree n°2012-046 relative to smoking ban in public places, prohibit smoking in all public places in Togo. Since 2009, ANCE-Togo and Campaign for Tobacco Free-Kids (USA), work closely to support Togo Ministry of Health in implementing WHO-Framework Convention for Tobacco Control (FCTC) through the adoption of the law, the implementing decrees, Executive Orders and the implementation of regulations.

In order to evaluate smoking ban implementation in public places in Togo after 4 years of the entry into force of this policy, ANCE-Togo and CTFK and organizing several activities, including video conference to discuss and exchange on the tools and online capacity building to the staff and volunteers. ANCE-Togo also organized a physical training session for 14 selected volunteers on Togo smoke free regulation.

After these training, volunteers and ANCE-Togo project team carried out observation study on the implementation of smoking ban in public places in all public places in Togo. This data collection activities was focused in 3 economic region of Togo, notably Lomé, Atakpamé and Sokodé from February to March 2017. Before field activities, the project team carried out the cartography of public places to be visited in accordance with CTFK research unit criteria in order to make the work easier.

For this data collection activity, weekends are appropriate to do the job due to the fact that in Togo many public places (Hotels, restaurants and bars) are full of customers during that period. For the success of this activity, the time on which the study should be done was also carefully agreed: 6AM to 9AM for the bus stations; 10AM to 12 for the sea transportation from; 11AM to 2PM for the airport; 7PM to 9PM for restaurants & hotels; 7PM to 12 (midnight) for bars. Volunteers in small groups of 2 people per area, equipped with observation checked list, observed with great care smoking ban implementation in target public places according to Togo smoke free policy. These investigators during their work, observed if there is designated smoking areas and do they respect legislation in force, whether people are smoking tobacco products indoor, whether smoking ban stickers are appropriately displayed at the entrance and indoor of public places and if they comply with law in force, whether ashtrays or cigarettes butts are visible in these public places, etc

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