UPDATE: The Government Management Committee voted to defer indefinitely the motion brought forward by St. Paul’s Councillor Josh Matlow after hearing from residents worried about the possible health impacts of Wi-Fi operating in public spaces. Please see HERE for more details.
UPDATE: The Government Management Committee meeting of November 18, 2013 has been rescheduled to Thursday, November 21, 2013, at 9:30 a.m., in Committee Room 2, 2nd Floor, Toronto City Hall, 100 Queen Street West, Toronto. Please see HERE for more details.
On Thursday, November 21, 2013 the Government Management Committee comprising of 6 Toronto councillors will hear from citizens and professionals regarding Councillor Josh Matlow’s recommendation for the Establishment of Free Public Wireless Internet in Toronto's Parks, Civic Squares, Privately-owned Public Spaces and Interested Business Improvement Areas. See agenda HERE. It will then be considered by City Council on December 16, 2013, subject to the actions of the Government Management Committee.
Aside from the massive costs associated with this “free” Wi-Fi recommendation, C4ST and concerned Torontonians believe blanketing Toronto in increased wireless RF radiation when the guideline for cumulative RF exposure to Canadians - Safety Code 6 is the middle of a national controversy, is a bad idea. Complete investigations and analysis need to be made into both the cost and health effects before this recommendation can be considered and understood.
What is Safety Code 6?
Health Canada’s Safety Code 6 is the exposure guidelines for the cumulative limit of wireless/RF radiation exposure to the human body. It governs the emissions from cell phones, cell towers and antenna, WiFi, smart meters, as well as consumer goods such as cordless phones and baby monitors. It was put in place in the 1980’s, based on tests done to a 220lb mannequin on 6 minutes of exposure, does not take into account children, or biological effects at all and is embroiled in a national conflicted controversy unfolding in Ottawa at the moment. It is one of the worst in world today leaving Torontonians and Canadians at the mercy of industry. Learn more HERE.
Let the Government Management Committee know that Health Canada's Safety Code 6 is a blown out safety code: They are putting the fate of all Torontonians in the hands of this 'safety net' while the process to review it is completely corrupt and broken.
Is Wi-Fi included in the IARC/WHO’s 2B classification of RF-EMF?
Yes. In May of 2011, the IARC (International Association for Research on Cancer) declared radio frequency radiation as a possible cause of cancer. Click HERE for official document. Since then Federal, provincial, and municipal health authorities in Canada have made the FALSE claim that the IARC declaration of RF as a possible human carcinogen refers ONLY to mobile phones. This is not and has never been the case. Wi-Fi and all RF-EMF emitting devices are included in this grouping.
Why the confusion?
IARC does not classify devices, they classify exposures. The 2B designation therefore applies to all RF-EMF exposures, regardless of the source. It isn’t the physical source that is being evaluated; it’s the type of emission that exits from any source, that is being evaluated.
Confirmation from IARC
In this video clip (click HERE) Dr. Jonathan M Samet, MD, University of Southern California, Chairman of the Working Group, states at the 3.12 minute mark “the designation of class 2B RF-EMFs is unspecified as to source, class 2B has broad applicability to sources that emit RF-EMFs".
Confirmation from Dr Robert A Baan PhD, Responsible Officer, Monograph 102 on RF-EMF, The IARC Monographs, IARC, Lyon, FRANCE
“Many other devices emit the same type of RF radiation, e.g.,base-station antennas, radio/tv antennas, WiFi stations, smart meters, etc. Therefore, all these fall under the same broad evaluation of “Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Fields.” Click HERE to read.
In 1999 Toronto Public Health recommended an additional (100-fold) level of protection to Safety Code 6 due to the absence of proof of either safety or harm arising from RF exposures. See HERE. Health Canada did nothing.
We know from other carcinogens, that if studies on adults show strong relationships for malignant cancer in adults, the results for children will be far worse as their cells are dividing much faster. As each cell divides, cell errors triggered by RF radiation have more profound lifetime implications.
Toronto's Medical Officer Of Health Dr. McKeown is on record as campaigning for smoking to be removed from public parks, as have been carcinogenic pesticides. It is in the public's best interest that yet another carcinogen is not allowed in Toronto public spaces.
Do not allow another carcinogen in Toronto's outdoor public spaces!
Councillor Josh Matlow is calling for a staff report on adding free public wireless internet in Toronto’s parks, civic squares, privately owned public spaces and business improvement areas. He wants to see a pilot program in Nathan Phillips Square by the end of 2014, saying the benefits to residents and visitors alike would be enormous. In a letter to the Economic Development Committee dated Aug.30 posted on his website, the Ward 22 Councillor suggests they revisit a 2006 initiative between the City and Toronto Hydro to provide free wireless internet to city parks, squares and civic centres — and privately-owned public spaces.
What Josh Matlow and Toronto Council may not yet realize is that the by-product of a high powered Wi-Fi network such as this is high levels of RF radiation. With regards to the safety of radio-frequency radiation, there is growing evidence of biological harm, so much so that in 2011 the World Health Organization added radio-frequency radiation (which includes wireless) to its list of Possible Human Carcinogens. With a concentration of exponentially high levels of RF radiation already emitting from cellular towers and antenna, smart meters, etc, in Toronto 24/7, it is not wise to increase the radiation levels further.
While the governing guideline for Canadian exposure limits – Safety Code 6 is currently being reviewed, the review process is completely corrupted by corporate influences, and is in fact, broken.
Email to alert the management committee of your opposition to this plan. Costs and health effects need to be examined and analysed.
What is Prudent Avoidance?
Prudent avoidance is a precautionary principle in risk management, stating that reasonable efforts to minimise potential risks should be taken when the actual magnitude of the risks is unknown. In this case it takes the form of wireless radiation (EMR/RF) dictated in a document called Safety Code 6.