Canada: Wij zijn de kanariepietjes in een kolenmijn.

maandag, 09 februari 2009 - Categorie: Berichten Internationaal

Bron: 5 februari 2009

Electro-overgevoelige vrouw in Canada strijdt met medeburgers tegen de verdere uitbreiding van zendmasten voor mobiele telefonie:

'We're the canaries in the coal mine'

A group of Niagara residents don't want any more cell phone towers in Pelham

By Lori Sherman, Staff

Feb 06, 2009
Large Medium Small Print This Article Tell a friend Sue Parsons used to love technology. She recalls being the first of her friends to own a cell phone and the only person she knew with a fancy flip mobile, all while studying towards her degree in computer science in the early 90s. Now, more than a decade later, the thought of coming into contact with a cell phone or even a computer makes Parsons sick - literally.
That's because Parsons is suffering from a widely unknown disorder called electro hypersensitivity, she says.

Parsons says the disorder, which is experienced in some individuals after being exposed to electromagnetic fields transmitted through computers, cell phones, microwaves and televisions, causes headaches, dizziness, intense fatigue and skin rashes. Symptoms that Parsons knows all too well.

''I really started acknowledging it two years ago but I'd been having symptoms three or four years before being diagnosed,'' said Parsons from her Geneva street home in St. Catharines.

According to Parsons, her health problems began to intensify while working on the Brock University campus in Alumni services. She says it was the positioning of her desk, right next to the switchboard room on the campus, which caused her to begin having severe headaches, daily nosebleeds and eventually mild seizures.

Her doctors told her she may have early stages of multiple sclerosis. Scared and sure that her health problems were stemming from another source, she visited the Environmental Health Clinic at Sunnybrook Hospital in Toronto and received a diagnosis of EHS.

Now, Parsons along with several other residents in Pelham, are fighting to stop Rogers Wireless Inc. from constructing new cell phone towers along Victoria Avenue. The towers, which some residents feel will be an eyesore and decrease the value of their properties, may also cause severe health problems for residents in the community, they say.

''Who will want to buy my property beside a cell phone tower with the possibility of ill health effects?'' said Pelham resident Jerry Limick during a presentation to city council this week. Lemick, who was joined by two other concerned residents for the presentation, brought forward a motion for council to consider stopping the construction if the research behind 'electro smog' is correct.

''My wife and I would never purchase land next to high voltage towers or WiFi towers, for that matter,'' said Robert Kaman, a homeowner on Victoria Avenue, who brought a petition containing 34 signatures of residents opposed to the building of the towers. Kaman asked council to postpone the construction until more information is made available from Health Canada, Industry Canada and Rogers Wireless over whether or not these towers may cause health problems or decrease the values of homes along the street.

Parsons, who has joined Pelham residents in their mission to halt the tower construction, sent a letter to Mayor Dave Augustyn last week pleading with him adopt a precautionary principle when approaching this issue.

She says that Pelham council has the authority and responsibility to protect its residents, even though many councillors expressed that the issue was out of their jurisdiction.

''I don't think we have the authority... to place a ceiling threshold,'' said Coun. John Durley, who said it would be up to Health Canada and the federal government to say whether or not the tower frequencies are safe.

Coun. Cook suggested the residents contact their local MP and by getting members of the provincial government on board, the pull on federal legislation would be more effective.

''People aren't the only ones who don't know about this problem. Even local governments don't know the power they have to change this,'' said Parsons. ''But they (council) have the right to protect their citizens.''

At the end of the discussion, both Coun. Debbie Urbanowitz and Coun. Jim Lane put forward a motion that council request, prior to the installation of the towers, Rogers comply with the building permit process and they prove to local residents and neighbours that no ill health effects will come as a result of their installation.

At the vote, council decided to split the motion and although the first half of the motion ensuring Rogers complied with building codes was passed, the later half asking Rogers to prove the towers are healthy was deferred.

Mayor Dave Augustyn was the only member of council who voted against the deferral.

''I would have rather seen us debate that and approve that... I thought we didn't have to wait to respectfully request Rogers prove to local residents and neighbours that there's no ill effects,'' said Augustyn in an interview with Niagara this Week after the meeting. ''We could have sent that off to them immediately... I just thought we could have sent that message out.''

For now, residents will need to wait at least 60 days for Rogers Wireless to come back to the city with answers to their questions.

''It's crazy. It's ridiculous,'' said Parsons. ''These towers can change your whole way of life. I can't work anymore. I can't go out anywhere. I'm stuck at home and even that's not good anymore.''

To learn more about Parsons crusade to change the legislation surrounding cell phone and wifi tower installation and to learn more about EHS, visit her web site at .

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