Proposed law vs ambulant vendors near schools in Oro under study
THE City Council committee on health and sanitation and health insurance chaired by Councilor Maria Lourdes Gaane during its recent meeting discussed the proposed ordinance prohibiting ambulant vendors from selling within 50-meters from schools.
This is to comply with issued guidelines on food safety in school canteens, as contained in DepEd Order No. 52, s. 2008.
The order instructs schools division superintendents to oversee the effective management of school canteens. It underscores the responsibility of the school principal for any untoward incident that may happen in school due to non-compliance with school health policies and food safety guidelines.
During the meeting, Councilor Gaane said most ambulant vendors have stalls within the school premises.
She announced that one of the projects of the city government is to provide stalls/space to ambulant vendors in designated areas.
Dr. Fe Bongcas of the City Health Office said the DepEd order only focuses on food safety in school canteens.
She also cited the prohibition against the sale of soft drinks, junk foods and any food products that may be detrimental to the child’s health.
“It is an advocate nga maoy ibutang sa canteen, so wala sila’y hold outside the school,” she stressed.
Bongcas assured that the City Health Office is conducting sanitary inspections in schools before the start of classes.
She said if ambulant vendors have sanitary permits, the main concern is on sanitation issues.
However, she cited that most of them have no permit.
She added that there is an ongoing coordination with the Roads and Traffic Administration (RTA) to address this concern.
A representative of the City Administrator’s Office clarified that ambulant vendors are not issued business permits.
He stressed the need for proper monitoring and proposed that vendors be required to attend seminars on food handling.
Councilor Jay R. Pascual, member of the committee, maintained the need for regular inspections.
The committee will continue the discussion during its next meeting with representatives of the Department of Health (DOH), City Health Office and Elmer Wabe of the City Tourism and Cultural Affairs Office.