Equipe Phonegate 8 Nov 2019
Marianne magazine publishes on its website this open letter to French Ministers Agnes Buzyn, Elisabeth Borne and Bruno Le Maire, signed with six other associations working to protect public health.. We are counting on you to relay it and sign the petition.
Open Letter to the French government
For more than 30 years, mobile telephony manufacturers have deliberately chosen to deceive billions of mobile phone users, by overexposing them well beyond the exposure thresholds that generate risks to the health of citizens and their children. This new industrial and health scandal has a name: “Phonegate“.
Taking advantage of tailored regulations in 1993 through a non-governmental agency, ICNIRP (International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection), manufacturers have since benefited from exposure limits that only take into account so-called thermal effects, knowingly ignoring the biological effects that appear in the short or long term. An international regulatory system allows them, in all unfairness, to give priority to the power of emissions of devices over public health.
The vast majority of international regulatory and control agencies, including the National Frequencies Agency (ANFR), have turned a blind eye to these misleading practices and have endorsed the prevailing discourse favoring the interests of the same manufacturers, all thanks to a quite disturbing mix of conflicts of interest at all levels.
As for the public authorities, the least we can say is that, once again, they will have waited until being backed up against the wall before finally reacting.
On Friday October 25, 2019, the three ministers concerned – Health, Ecology and Economy – finally, under pressure of the revelations, legal actions and the petition with nearly 6,500 signatories, led by the Phonegate Alert Association, announced a series of measures, some of which had been expected for more than 3 years. The publication of the reports of ANSES (National Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health & Safety) in July 2016 and October 2019 contribute to making it urgent to implement the latter’s recommendations.
The most important recommendation is undoubtedly to take action at European level to stop testing mobile phones at an inappropriate distance from the body or head. The contact test, i.e. at 0 mm from the skin, has always been essential and must become a reality as soon as possible in France, Europe and worldwide.
In addition, given the millions of smartphones owned by citizens who are unaware of their non-compliance, it is imperative that information campaigns be launched through the media.
Mobile phones, whether used today or perhaps purchased for the holiday season, pose a health risk to citizens. And this is all the more so since, out of a desire not to frighten people, the public authorities continue not to launch prevention campaigns and good practices, which are in keeping with the interests of public health, and in line with the place of smartphones in private and professional life.
The “6 good practices” associated with the government statement show how this subject is not being treated with the seriousness it deserves. Some recommendations are not taken into account, namely not to keep your mobile phone in a pocket or not to hold it in contact with your ear, even though ANSES has just published a new report to warn against this use and ask for the recall or update of certain mobile phones sold before the new European regulations of 2016.
Still worse, the use of the hands-free kit with cord is also to be questioned. It should be recalled that, already in 2017, the California Department of Public Health issued recommendations to warn users in this regard, its advice being to use them only for short calls and not to listen to music or watch a movie.
Finally, the ministries concerned have announced that they want to bring together the main manufacturers so that they “commit themselves to a voluntary process to update the software for their models”.
We welcome the principle but not its purpose; because, in reality, these updates will result in a significant decrease in the connectivity of the device to the network. And it will be a double penalty for the user who, after being overexposed sometimes more than 4 times beyond the health risk limits, will be forced to change his smartphone… but without any further guarantee as to his real exposure level.
In this context of widespread deception by manufacturers of the sector, it seems necessary to put a stop to all deployment of 5G telephony, because all these revelations make it even more unacceptable for the willingness of the government to relax the regulatory framework for the installation of tens of thousands of relay antennas, including those of the fifth generation, and to make exposure standards more permissive, which is increasingly risky for the health of residents.
We therefore ask Ministers Agnès Buzyn, Elisabeth Borne and Bruno Le Maire to receive us as soon as possible and, in any case, before the meeting scheduled with the manufacturers so that we can share with them our proposals, both in terms of regulations and the issues of prevention in the face of this new scandal.
Until then, we advise everyone to stop keeping phones against the ear or in a pocket. A simple gesture that can save lives!