Raise awareness of environmental health issues in order to better protect our children and future generations.

EMF Studies

07 May 2014

A Call to Protect Our Children from Radiation

In the 19-story Nassau University Medical Center, East
Meadow, New York, there is Wi-Fi in the Emergency
Room and every 20 feet in hospital corridors directly
outside patient rooms.  
If the spread of wireless technologies continues, we will lose our humanity, our civility, our health.

Today, I went to a local restaurant in Geneva to enjoy a pleasant meal. What did I see all around me? Two members of a family beside me were immersed in their smartphones, the small child playing games and his mother reading Email and surfing. Nearby, a man had set up his iPad on the table. I had just come from the municipal library – where there is Wi-Fi in the reading room and I have to sit as far away as possible from the router in order not to emerge with pressure in my head. In the Tribune de Genève, I read an editorial of someone who had been to a recital – Schubert’s “Winterreise”. She commented that she had been distracted by the person beside her who was looking at her smartphone during most of the recital. Many complaints concerning use of wireless technology have been sent to the opera house where the recital took place. I have also been assaulted by this incivility in Geneva’s main concert hall. The writer of the comment calls it being ill-bred, I call it addiction. And in the end, if this madness does not stop, our humanity and our health will be destroyed.

Recently, during my stay in the U.S., I accompanied my mother to the emergency room of a large university hospital in Nassau County, Long Island, and later visited her in her room during her hospitalization. After spending seven hours in the emergency room with her, I left feeling sick – and I am only mildly electrosensitive. I mentioned this to the attending physician who looked at me uncomprehendingly. There was a Wi-Fi router in the ER. 

 Every 20 feet in the hospital corridors near patient rooms, there were Wi-Fi routers. Every day, I left exhausted. On return to Geneva, I wrote to the CEO of the hospital concerning Wi-Fi, pointing out its harmful effects, citing documents by Dr. David O.Carpenter, who had worked with the New York State Department of Health, and Dr. Martha Herbert. I also suggested the hospital create wireless-free areas and rooms for electrohypersensitive persons and include teaching on the health effects of this technology in their curriculum. They probably are not even aware that this technology is harmful!

Back in Switzerland, as a member of an EMF advocacy group, I wrote to the CEO of the Swiss Post concerning their publicity on “CanalPoste”, video ads in 250 offices throughout Switzerland. There was an ad showing a child around 5 years old with a cell phone glued to his ear, listening to the latest weather report. The CEO, a woman, actually replied to the letter, saying they discussed this with the agency responsible for the ad, MétéoSuisse, the national weather agency, which is part of the Department of the Interior. This department is also responsible for health. Here, we may have scored a small victory, at least in awareness-raising. Our arguments for health effects included the classification of WHO of EMF as “possibly carcinogenic”, the text on electromagnetic fields included on the Swiss Cancer League’s site, the one included in most cell phone manuals (using BlackBerry as an example), and the precautionary measures advised by the Swiss Federal Office for Public Health. These texts are practically invisible to the general public.

Why this ignorance? Partly, the reason is that government authorities and the medical profession follow the guidelines of the World Health Organization which minimizes the health effects of EM radiation. And who set these guidelines? – a WHO project on EMF headed by Michael Repacholi, the first Chairman of ICNIRP (International Committee on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection), which was set up by an agency funded by the nuclear industry, created to develop ways to protect against ionizing radiation. It was found that Michael Repacholi was receiving funds from the wireless industry, while serving as head of the WHO project.

In closing, I am sharing my comment “Wireless Technology: The Truth”, published yesterday in the Tribune de Genève regarding the article, “The Sentinels of WHO Continue the Fight”. (IndependentWHO denounces WHO’s silence regarding the true health effects of nuclear catastrophes, a silence created through WHO's agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency which is part of the civil nuclear lobby.)

“For seven years, the sentinels of IndependentWHO have been denouncing “the lies of WHO concerning the health situation of the populations affected by the radioactive pollution of Chernobyl” and more recently, Fukushima. WHO, whose purpose is “the attainment by all peoples of the highest possible level of health”, minimizes not only the effects of radiation caused by nuclear catastrophes, but also those of radiation from electromagnetic fields (EMF), emitted by wireless technology. Although the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), created by WHO, classified in May 2011 CEM as “possibly carcinogenic” to humans, WHO, in June 2011, published an information sheet which states that “To date, no adverse health effects have been established as being caused by mobile phone use.” Just like the nuclear lobby, that of the wireless industry has silenced WHO. In order to safeguard health, especially of children, we ask WHO to tell the truth about the harmfulness of EMF, as well as that of radioactive pollution from nuclear catastrophes.

The comment was inspired by my ties with active members of IndependentWHO and the 2013 French documentary, "Microwaves, Science and Lies":

"WHEN BUSINESS LEADS RESEARCH, CAN WE STILL TRUST SCIENCE ?

For the past ten years worldwide questioning of mobile phone antennas has been increasing. It is based on numerous scientific studies which have revealed the effects of electromagnetic waves on health. Yet, States, industrialists and part of the scientific community claim that health standards protect the public. By way of following those who launch alerts, citizens, journalists, scientists and electromagnetic hypersensitive people, this film reveals how the mobile phone strategists manipulate science to send out a reassuring message which casts doubts on the knowledge surrounding the harmfulness of this very technology."  (The film is now available in English.  Ref. http://www.filmsdocumentaires.com/films/2858-microwaves-science-and-lies)

We have a very long way to go in raising awareness of the health effects of wireless technology. Meanwhile, people get sicker, less civil, and more addicted to this technology, and we adults – parents, government authorities, physicians, are not protecting our children, who are so much more vulnerable to electromagnetic radiation.

by Meris Michaels

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