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Timiş County Foundation for Youth (FITT) calls on the Romanian Parliament not to change the anti-smoking legislation

Timiş County Foundation for Youth (FITT), the structure that manages the youth House of Timisoara-the only youth center in Romania certified by the Council of Europe (the only one in Romania and among the nine across the continent), calls for The Parliament of Romania and, in particular, to the Committee on Health and Family of the Chamber of Deputies, does not amend the anti-smoking legislation in force (established by Law No. 349/2002 to prevent and combat the effects of the consumption of tobacco products, with subsequent amendments and additions – the most important and relevant ones brought by Law No. 15/2016) and reject the Bill No. 531/2016, as well as any other similar legislative initiative, which aims to relax the rules on smoking in public space again. Early last year, by adopting Law No. 15/2016 on the amendment and completion of Law No. 349/2002 to prevent and combat the effects of the consumption of tobacco products, Romania took a very important step in the fight against tobacco dependence, aligning itself with the World Health Organisation Framework Convention on the control Tobacco consumption, 13 years after its adoption and 11 years after its ratification at national level, as well as other international commitments, and prohibiting smoking in closed public spaces, closed spaces at work, means of transport In common, playgrounds for children, sanitary establishments, education, and those intended for child, state and private protection and assistance. The provisions of this law were appreciated by the Constitutional Court of Romania (CCR), in the reasoning of Decision No. 29/2016 on the rejection of the objection of non-constitutionality of the provisions of the Law on modification and completion of Law No. 349/2002 for the prevention and combating of the effects of the consumption of tobacco products [1] as being fully constitutional, guaranteeing the "right to life and the right to physical and mental integrity of the person [art. 22 para. (1)], the right to health protection, while establishing the obligation of the State to take measures to ensure hygiene and public health [art. 34 para. (1) and (2)), the right of any person to a healthy and environmentally balanced environment, namely the obligation of the State to ensure the legal framework for the exercise of that right [art. 35 para. (1) and (2)), as well as the right of children and young people to a special protection and assistance Scheme in the performance of their rights [art. 49 para. (1)] ". The CCR also considers, in the same document, that ' no prejudice to the provisions of art. 26 para. (2) of the Constitution relating to the right of the person to dispose of itself, as no provision of the criticised law prohibits smoking, such behaviour taking into account the free option of each person, "and mentioning that" the right of the person to dispose of It itself has no absolute character, which is conditional on the constitutional text that regulates it: "The natural person has the right to have it himself, unless it violates the rights and freedoms of others, public order and good manners." As a result, the exercise of a personal option, in the present case of smoking, must take into account the rights of those who do not have this option. Both smokers and non-smokers may frequent the premises covered by the legislature by the regulated prohibition. In view of the consequences of smoking on life and health, it is the smokers who must adapt their behaviour so as not to violate the fundamental rights of those who do not have that option. " On November 2016, a group of 32 senators and deputies initiated a draft law [2] which aims to redefine the closed space in the space that "has a roof, ceiling or ceiling and which is delineated by at least two walls" in the space that "has a roof , ceiling or ceiling and which is framed by the surrounding walls ", introducing the exception of" dwelling spaces ". The project also proposes that smoking be allowed only in specially furnished rooms, but which can be located anywhere, not just "exclusively in the transit area of international airports", as the legal rules in force currently provide, and which do not Serve only smoking, but also "smoking-related activities, such as coffee consumption, hot drinks or soft drinks, etc." Furthermore, the draft law also proposes to offer smokers the right to constitute ' in associations or smoking clubs, which may arrange special spaces intended exclusively for smoking and smoking-related activities '. The statement of reasons [3] of this draft law is not based on any statistical or scientific data, nor on any recommendation or international rule, but solely on the subjective opinions and interpretations of initiators. Thus, through all these legislative changes, in conjunction, if this draft law had been adopted and would enter into force, it would practically return to the situation before the entry into force of Law No. 15/2016, when smoking was allowed in any closed public space, if this was flagged by a simple poster. This approach is evident to public health, contrary to the international regulations and recommendations in force, adopting it can mean a big step back in Romania's attempt to guarantee the health of its citizens. Statistical data on the danger that smoking involves public health are known to the public, with more than 42 000 deaths in Romania having related causes for tobacco use. Thus, any action to combat tobacco dependence must be supported, and projects which propose to contribute negatively to this must be strongly rejected. Thus, the Timiş County Foundation for Youth (FITT) joined the initiative of the 2035 – the first generation without tobacco in Romania and calls on the Committee on Health and Family and then the plenary of the Chamber of Deputies (decision chamber on this subject) to Reject the Bill No. 531/2016, as well as any other similar legislative initiative, which aims to relax the rules on smoking in public space again. We appreciate the fact that the Romanian Government has formulated a negative point of view [4] on this draft law, and the Committee on Industry and Services [5] and the Committee on Human Rights, cults and issues of national minorities [6] of the chamber MEPs have negatively endorsed this legislative initiative. FITT will always support any action that aims to help protect the health of Romanian citizens and will strive to combat all elements that may affect this fundamental right. Timiş County Foundation for Youth (FITT) is an umbrella organization for non-governmental youth organisations in Timiş County. With 32 member organisations and over 27 years of uninterrupted activity, FITT is the most important and oldest youth NGO in western Romania. The programmes and activities implemented by the FITT extend to a wide range, from social activities to disadvantaged young people to cultural or active citizenship programmes and to the development of public policies at local and national level. FITT itself is a democratic model, being governed by a General Assembly composed exclusively of youth NGOs from Timiş County and led by a council consisting of 13 representatives of them. FITT manages the youth House of Timisoara, which in 2016 it received from the Council of Europe the quality certificate for Youth centres, being the only such centre in Romania and one of the nine such entities on the entire Continent. The Youth House offers the following facilities at the infrastructure level: 7 seminar rooms, a cinema hall, a show room, exhibition Halls, a dance studio, two choreography halls, two IT labs, a coworking space, a subsidiary of County Library as well as accommodation spaces for youth activities. The Youth House is the main point where numerous local NGOs meet and develop activities, projects and events for young people. FITT implemented the pilot edition of the Romanian Youth Capital Program (Timişoara 2016-2017) and coordinates the application of the city of Timisoara to become the European capital of Youth in 2020 (Timişoara being the only city in Romania In the finals of the competition). FITT is also a member of the Regional Youth Network, the European Network of Youth centres (European Newtork of Youth Centers), the Youth Council of Romania, the National Youth Foundation, the National Foundations Convention for Youth of Romania, the National Working Group for Structured Dialogue and the Youth Advisory Council in addition to the city Hall of Timisoara. FITT hosted the first youth Summit in Romania, as well as the Gala youth Projects organized by the Ministry of Youth and Sports. In addition, since the year 2010, FITT organizes the county Gala of youth projects annually, where the best youth projects, the most active volunteers, as well as youth workers in Timiş County are awarded. At the same time, FITT was a partner in drafting the youth strategy of Timişoara for the period 2014-2020 and realised the youth strategy of Timiş County for the period 2017-2022. In addition, FITT has developed a sustainable partnership with the Ministry of Youth and Sports in Romania. FITT focuses on the involvement of young people in the community and in decision-making processes, on the development of local and national youth policies and on the promotion of European values among young people.       [1] Decision of the Constitutional Court of Romania No. 29/2016 on the rejection of the objection of non-constitutionality of the provisions of the Law on modification and completion of Law No. 349/2002 to prevent and combat the effects of tobacco consumption – https://lege5.ro/en/Gratuit/geydcobzhaya/ Decision-no-29-2016-on-rejection-objection-de-non-constitutionality-of-provisions-law-for-modification-and-completion-law-no-349-2002-for-prevention-and-combat-effects-consumption-[2] PL-X No. 531/2016 – Draft Law on modification and completion of Law No. 349/2002 for the prevention and Combating of tobacco consumption – http://www.cdep.ro/pls/proiecte/upl_pck2015.proiect?idp=16045 [3] The explanatory statement of the draft Law No. 531/2016 – Http://www.cdep.ro/proiecte/2016/500/30/1/em758.pdf [4] The point of view of the Romanian Government regarding PL-X Nr. 532/2016 (item. 25) – http://www.cdep.ro/proiecte/2016/500/30/1/pvg%2006.03.2017.PDF [5] Opinion of the Committee on Industry and Services on PL-X Nr. 531/2016 – Http://www.cdep.ro/comisii/industrii/pdf/2017/av531_16.pdf [6] opinion of the Committee on Human Rights, cults and issues of national minorities regarding PL-X Nr. 531/2016 – Http://www.cdep.ro/comisii/drepturile_omului/pdf/2016/av531.pdf