In many ways, gossip has brought people together but divided them as well. However, more often than not, it has brought conflict among neighbors.
This is what pushed barangay officials in Pangasinan to implement a new and unusual policy that forbids gossip-mongers.
The anti-tsismis and anti-ingay policy which specifies penalties for violators.
Aside from the mandatory community service, first time offenders will be fined P300, for second timers a fine of P500 will be imposed and P1000 for the third time.
"May freedom of speech, expression...but sometimes, 'yung mga rights na ito hindi absolute...we also have to take consideration yung rights ng iba...the right of one person to his dignity and the right to expression and also if others right will be violated like yung freedom niya or dignity niya as a person," defends the Provincial legal officer of Pangasinan Atty. Geraldine Baniqued.
"Kasi yun yung simula ng awayan tsaka walang magandang maidudulot ang tsismis [Rumors start conflicts. Rumors don't bring any good at all]," said Barangay Captain Danilo Tabucol Sr.
Binalonan's local government shared their plans of implementing the policy in all the towns. However, as of now, the ordinance is only implemented in Barangays Moreno, Pasileng Sur, Cili, Vacante, San Felipe Central and Dumayat.
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