Close bars by 1 am to deter crimes, lawmaker asks

Night bars and clubs should be closed after 1 a.m.

This is the proposal of Caloocan Rep. Oscar Malapitan, who believes that the enactment of such measure into law would significantly deter crimes not only in Metro Manila but in other major cities in the country as well.

“There is no necessity to provide statistics of crimes occurring in these establishments or as a result of having patronized them. Aside from crimes, lives are lost due to preventable accidents,” Malapitan said.

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Under House Bill No. 3235, Malapitan asks the government to limit the service hours of nightclubs, cocktail lounges, bars, and similar establishments that offer alcoholic drinks from 5 p.m. to 1 a.m.

The bill, which is still pending with the House Committee on Public Order and Safety, provides extensions of up to 2 a.m. during Fridays, Saturdays, and holidays.

“Psychologists, sociologists, and others believe that intoxicating liquor and constant exposure to equally intoxicating environments cause criminality,” Malapitan explained.

Describing nightclubs, and bars as crime-stimulants, Malapitan noted that more social evils could be prevented with their regulation.

"We also must have to weigh the economic side of the issue with public interest as the bottom line,” Malapitan said.

Malapitan explained owners, operators, or managers of establishments caught violating the bill will be jailed from at least six months to a maximum of six years of jail term without probation.

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The bill also requires them to prohibit patrons with criminal records and people carrying firearms from entering their establishments.

“For such purpose, operators or owners should secure a list of such citizens with criminal or questionable character from the NBI or the police agencies,” Malapitan said.

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