Scrolling banners warning about the effects on health of tobacco smoking could be displayed in Bahrain’s cinemas during scenes depicting smoking, according to a story in the Gulf Daily News.
The proposed move, which is part of a health ministry plan, is in line with a 2009 anti-smoking law, said smoking cessation program co-ordinator Dr Maha Al Kuwari.
“Several countries have a pre-movie public advisory against smoking, while others have pop-up messages against smoking whenever there is any scene depicting smoking in the film,” she said.
“We already have the advisories in place for locally produced films and we now plan to introduce them in all international films and media.
“It sends a message to movie-goers that smoking is injurious to their health.”
Al Kuwari said the plan was to have a warning scroll on screen for the duration of any scene with smoking in it.
Meanwhile Health Ministry public health and primary care assistant under-secretary Dr Mariam Al Jalahma called for a crackdown on scenes showing characters smoking in TV series broadcast in the ‘region’, and said such acts should be banned from being published in print or electronic media.
The proposals come at a time when ministry officials have noticed an increase in smoking among schoolchildren and women in Bahrain, Al Kuwari said.
“Women who were once afraid and used to smoke secretly are now openly smoking,” she said. “It is a trend that needs to stop.”