Solon: Allow pets in food establishments

December 6, 2023 Jester P. Manalastas 219 views

A PARTY LIST lawmaker filed a measure that seeks to regulate the accommodation of pets in the restaurants and other food establishments.

In filing House Bill 9570, Kusug Tausug party-list Rep. Shernee Tan-Tambut said there is a need to balance the rights of responsible pet owners and business establishments to enjoy the happiness and excitement brought by pets.

Tan-Tambut also reminded everyone of the State’s responsibility to protect the people from potential harm and airborne diseases associated with pets.

“In a time where the whole world has been combatting the effects of a worldwide pandemic, such bill was passed in the hopes of striking a healthier balance between the rights of responsible pet owners and food establishments by reinforcing policies that ensure that certain aspects of the customer dining experience (food, utensils, and other consumable goods) do not comingle with animal allergens such as saliva, urine, or fur,” Tan-Tambut said in a statement.

The lady solon said she is aware that various food establishments cater to all individuals however she expressed her concern for food and health safety in a scenario where customers with allergies or other health concerns are dining in the same establishment for customers with accompanying pets.

According to the solon, the bill does not only for the restaurant-goers to avoid exposure to various animal allergens found in pets but also to protect individuals predisposed to illness from possible aggravation of their health conditions when they dine in various food establishments.

Likewise, the bill extends the same care and respect to pet owners by reaffirming the different responsibilities associated with having pets whether it be for companionship, for service of persons with disabilities, or for general protection.

While Tan-Tambut is in pursuit of regulating the kinds of interaction that may be had between individuals and pets in places where people ordinarily break bread, she ultimately aims to promote a healthy environment where individuals may interact and dine freely with one another without worrying about their exposure to certain health hazards.

In her explanatory note, the solon stressed that animal allergens such as dander, saliva, urine, fur, feathers and scales may accumulate in the indoor enclosed environments such as those found inertial food outlets.

In the Philippines, she added, common allergies are due to animal or pet allergy reactions triggered by exposure to proteins found in the skin cells, saliva or urine of animals such as cats, dogs, and rodents.

“In order to manage such allergies and rabies, exposure to animal should be minimized among others thus the need to prevent such pets inside restaurants and other food establishments,” she also said.