SP mulls incentives for “drug-free establishments”

A proposed ordinance granting incentives to business establishments or organizations in Dagupan City certified to be drug-free has been filed with the endorsement of the Dagupan Police, Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, the Drug Treatment and Rehabilitation Center Bureau of Jail Management and Penology and the City Health Office. 

Councilor Jose Netu Tamayo, SP chairman on laws rules and ordinances, said the proposed ordinance is consistent with the requirement set by the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) that every business establishment or organization in the country must have an anti-drug policy to establish that all its employees have been tested to be drug-free.

“It is also a reiteration of support to the War on Drugs of President Rodrigo Duterte,” Tamayo said during a committee hearing on August 8 attended by Dagupan police chief   P/Lt. Colonel Abubakar Mangelen Jr. and Raymond Basbas, administrative officer of the Drug Treatment and Rehabilitation Center in Bonuan Binloc. 

Under the proposed ordinance, a business establishment or organization declared as drug-free will enjoy a five percent reduction of their mayor’s permit fees and will be issued a certification that can be posted by the establishment inside its premises.

Under the proposed ordinance, it will be the City Health Office (CHO) that will declare an establishment drug-free since it will be the office that will administer the drug tests to workers of private establishments.

Until the CHO Diagnostic and Drug Testing Center is accredited by the Department of Health, as a drug testing facility, the proposed ordinance also mandates the CHO to enter into Memorandum of agreement with DOH for the purpose of the accreditation of its drug-testing facility.

According to Basbas, the P250 cost of a drug test fixed by DOH will be paid by the worker.

If the drug test turns out positive, a confirmatory test will be conducted in Manila and the cost of the procedure, from P1,200 to P1,500 will be shouldered by the accredited drug testing center conducting the confirmatory test.

Tamayo clarified that since compliance with the ordinance will be voluntary, it will not provide any fine or punishment if an establishment opts not to seek the certification that it is drug-free. (Leonardo Micua)

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