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“It’s a misunderstanding” – alcohol watchdog following 50,000 baht penalty rumour

Maya Taylor

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“It’s a misunderstanding” – alcohol watchdog following 50,000 baht penalty rumour | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Giovanna Gomes on Unsplash
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Alcohol opposition groups have rushed to deny a rumour circulating online that merely posting a photo of beer or using the word “beer” online could result in a 50,000 baht fine. The “fake news” started doing the rounds after a beer delivery company announced it had been fined for violating Thailand’s Alcohol Control Act.

Chuwit Jantharot from The Prevention Network against Alcohol says the rumour is causing unnecessary alarm and detracting from the true intention of the Alcohol Control Act, which is to safeguard public health.

“The rumour clearly intends to cause public panic and undermine the work of the Office of the Alcohol Control Committee, the Department of Disease Control and the Public Health Ministry. The rumour also distorts the intention of the Alcohol Control Act BE 2551, which aims to protect people’s health and reduce new drinkers. It has sparked misunderstanding and hatred among people towards the law.”

In a report in Nation Thailand, Chuwit claims the problems arose when alcohol suppliers affected by the current Covid-19 restrictions resorted to online promotion and advertising to sell their products, which goes against the act. He adds that the control of alcohol is even more important during the Covid-19 situation, where public gathering must be avoided and measures taken to mitigate health risks.

“Alcoholic beverages are a factor that worsens the Covid-19 situation. Drinkers will have lowered immunity against the virus while drinking itself promotes public gathering, which increases the risk of the virus spreading, as we can see from a cluster of cases generated from bars and pubs in Bangkok.”

Kamron Chudecha from the Alcohol Watch Network has also weighed in on the matter, confirming that simply using the word “beer” or posting photos of bottles or glasses where the brand is not displayed, does not break the law.

“The law only aims to prevent the advertising of alcoholic beverages on media platforms. If the poster has no commercial intention, he/she cannot be fined.”

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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Expats

Facebook group names and shames “farang prices”

Jack Burton

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Facebook group names and shames “farang prices” | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Thailand Red Cat

In days gone by, a foreigner visiting a national park or tourist site could often expect to be charged several times the price charged to a local. Now, thanks to a Facebook community naming and shaming venues that apply “farang prices” to foreign visitors, those days are, well, numbered. Members of the 2PriceThailand Facebook group are warning each other about price gouging for foreigners regardless of their residence status, a practice openly endorsed by state and private businesses alike, despite calls of outright discrimination.

The double pricing or dual pricing debate has been around ever since foreigners stepped onto Thai shores. It’s a hotly debated topic with strong opinions on both sides.

“The intention of this group is to give foreigners the right to choose. We don’t think it is fair that some tourist attractions disguise the fact that they have a dual price system. Our opinion is that if they want to overcharge foreign tourists by as much as 200% then that is their decision. But, don’t do it in a way that is both sneaky and insulting.”

The group also says they hope to see the abolition of the dual pricing system in Thailand.

“Thai people are internationally known for their kind and generous hospitality. The actions of a few tourist attractions are damaging that reputation.”

Popular British blogger Richard Barrow, who regularly writes about Thailand’s tourist attractions and scams on his websites, is the group’s admin. In 1 post, user Aisha Moller Pedersen warns that the “foreigner” admission fee for Phra Nakhon Khiri Historical Park is 150 baht; it’s 20 baht for Thais.

Just to step on the beach at Nangyuan Island Dive Resort, foreigners pay 200 baht (doubled from 100 baht due to Covid-19), while Thais pay 30, a member posted Monday.

Facebook group names and shames

Another user wrote that at Koh Chang Waterfall, the entrance fee is 200 baht for foreigners, while (adult) Thais only pay 20. A tourist attraction in Bangkok features its ticket prices in Thai and Arabic numbers. The “farang price” is nearly twice as high.

“I was there during the weekend and brought my work permit as well but no luck, and worst of all the ticket seller was very rude,so, we decided to leave. This is a widespread and systematic racism which should be stopped immediately.”

Another member wrote yesterday that adult foreigners pay 100 baht to enter the Queen Sirikit Botanical Garden in Chiang Mai, while Thai adults pay 40. But it’s not all negativity – members also post places that offer the same prices for Thais and foreigners. “Sukhothai Historical Park offering same prices for Thai and farang,” wrote one user in a Sunday post.

“Doi Tung Tourist Attraction – no dual pricing, and the nicest gardens I’ve seen in Thailand,” wrote another, referring to the Mae Fah Luang Botanical Garden in Chiang Rai.

Facebook group names and shames

SOURCE: Khaosod English

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Thai Life

Blaze destroys part of historic Si Ayutthaya temple

Jack Burton

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Blaze destroys part of historic Si Ayutthaya temple | The Thaiger
PHOTOS Line Today

Wat Chang Thong, built in the Ayutthaya period, has suffered severe fire damage last night as a blaze gutted one of its teak pavilions. Damage is estimated at 20 million baht. Police say the inferno at the temple in tambon Ko Rian, Si Ayutthaya district was reported about 9pm. The area is about 2 hours north of Bangkok city.

Some 20 fire trucks rushed to the scene, where ferocious flames already engulfed the 2-storey teakwood prayer pavilion. The firestorm was fanned by strong winds. Firefighters took over an hour to bring the blaze under control.

The pavilion’s top floor was used for prayers and the ground level for merit-making.

The 65 year old temple director said there were 13 monks living at the wat. One of them raised the alarm after hearing an explosion, possibly from a short circuit, on the ground floor of the pavilion.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post | Line Today

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Thai Life

UPDATE: Thai Cabinet approves civil partnership bill

The Thaiger

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UPDATE: Thai Cabinet approves civil partnership bill | The Thaiger
PHOTO: VOA News

NOTE: Yesterday, The Thaiger referred to the bill as allowing “same sex marriage”. Our headline was incorrect. We have corrected the story with updated information. We apologise for the error.

The Thai cabinet yesterday endorsed a bill allowing registration of same-sex couples, as well as legal amendments to ensure same-sex couples have the same rights and privileges as opposite-sex couples. The bill and the amendment will now be put to a vote in the Thai parliament.

The government’s deputy spokeswoman says the new Civil Partnership Bill and the amendment to the Civil and Commercial Code will “ensure fairness for people of all gender identification”. The bill defines civil partners as couples born with the same sex. Marriage registration will be available to consenting same-sex couples who are at least 17 years old. One or both must be Thai.

“The Civil Partnership Bill is a milestone for Thai society in promoting equality among people of all genders… This strengthens the families of people with sexual diversity and is appropriate for the present social circumstances.”

But the bill is already coming under heavy criticism. A “No to Civil Partnership Bill” hashtag is trending on Thai social media saying the new bill isn’t equivalent to marriage. They point out that the bill doesn’t ensure the same rights as those enjoyed by heterosexual married couples, and it doesn’t recognise engagement of same sex couples.

Minors who seek such civil partnership certification must have the consent of their parents, legal guardians or a court.

Spouses of civil partners will have the same legal rights as married husbands and wives, notably including with regard to personal and jointly-held property. Civil partners can adopt a child, or a partner can adopt an adoptive child of a spouse. When a partner dies, the survivor will have the same inheritance rights as conventional married couples under the Civil and Commercial Code. Sections of the code concerning married couples will also apply to civil partners.

Some of the key points of the Bill include…

  • Consenting same sex couples, who want to register their partnership, must be at least 17 years old and at least one must be a Thai national
  • In case the same sex couple are minors, they must have the consent of their parents, guardians or the court. After the registration of the partnership, the minors will be regarded as adults
  • Either member of the same sex partnership can act on behalf of the other, as with a heterosexual married couple.
  • A same sex couple can adopt a child
  • In case one of the partners dies, the survivor has the same rights and duties as a surviving heterosexual spouse

The Justice Ministry, which proposed the bill and the legal amendments, will monitor the effectiveness of the changes and plan other legal amendments to ensure compliance with those already enacted.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World

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