Salaam Bombay Foundation children gather at the BMC Commissioner’s office, CST and submit their demand towards“Right to Tobacco-Free Schools Bill” to Mr. Mohan Adtani(IAS), Additional Commissioner, BMC and Mr.Vinod Shelar, President of Education Committee, BMC.
The air today at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus reverberated with enthusiasm. On the occasion of World No Tobacco Day, the children from BMC and government-aided schools staged an impressive skit dressed as popular educationists and political leaders instantly caught the attention of commuters as they performed and rooted for the bill -Right To Tobacco Free Schools (RTTS) to make their school campuses better place for children to get education in Tobacco-Free environment.
On occasion of World No Tobacco Day, Children from Salaam Bombay Foundation staged an impressive skit dressed as popular educationists and political leaders demanding their right to Tobacco free Schools.
Children from Salaam Bombay Foundation’s Bal Parishad drafted and submitted one its kind bill at the BMC commissioner’s office. The bill states the following-
1. To make it mandatory for every school to refrain from allowing any sale of tobacco products inside the school premises and within the radius of 100 yards from the school
2. To make it mandatory for every school to have rules of no smoking or chewing of tobacco inside the premises of the school by the Principals, Teachers, other staffs, Parents and the visitors to the school.
3. To make it mandatory for every school to have a “Tobacco Control Committee” chaired by school head/ principal.
4. To integrate tobacco control activities with on-going School Health Program of the State.
The children also gathered public opinion on the demand for “Right to Tobacco-Free school bill”. Later in the day, the enthusiastic lot visited the BMC commissioner office at CST and proposed the authority to introduce the ‘Right to Tobacco Free Schools’ Bill. The children also requested for it to be mandatory for all the schools in Maharashtra to be tobacco-free.
This activity was undertaken by children who are a part of a programme called Super Army, developed by Salaam Bombay Foundation that empowers children to wage a war against tobacco using creative means like art, theatre and music. This programme, at present, touches upon 22 BMC and government-aided schools across Mumbai. Super Army is committed to spread awareness against tobacco among children, their peers and in their community. In the earlier survey, released by Salaam Bombay Foundation, it was revealed that the recommendations made in the WHO-Framework Convention for Tobacco Control (WHO-FCTC) for schools are not being implemented. The survey has shown that most of the schools are still falling short when putting into effect guidelines recommended by WHO to ensure tobacco- free schools.
Speaking on the RTTS bill, Ms. Devika Chadha, Programme Director, Salaam Bombay Foundation said, ‘These children are the future of India and ensuring a healthy future by asking for tobacco free schools is their right. We are sure that with the implementation of the RTTS bill, the schools will surely go hundred percent tobacco-free’.
Children from Salaam Bombay Foundation headed BMC commissioner’s Office to raise their demands towards “Right to Tobacco-Free Schools Bill”
About Salaam Bombay Foundation:
Salaam Bombay Foundation, a non-profit organization, was established in 2002 to empower children to say no to tobacco. The organization provides children with training, performance and reflection platforms to develop life skills that lead to personal and vocational empowerment. These platforms are made available through the Sports, Arts and Tobacco control advocacy programmes. At Salaam Bombay Foundation, we believe that empowerment leads to informed decisions. The organization is active in 129 municipal and 37 government- aided schools in Mumbai and its outreach programmes have reached 33 districts of rural Maharashtra.