Remove Wi-Fi From Schools / OUR CHILDREN ARE AT RISK (Must Read)
Thousands of studies world wide condemn wireless technology as the most under reported public debacle facing humanity and the most devastating environmental challenge facing all biological systems. The technology has proliferated with virtually no oversight and continues to cause cancer and destroy DNA and the blood brain barrier. The installation of WiFi in virtually all Portland Public Schools directly threatens the health of our children while they are exposed to a large dose of low frequency radiation all day long. Check out: www.wirelesswatchblog.com
Dr. Magda Havas, B.Sc., Ph.D.
Environmental & Resource Studies, Trent University, Peterborough, ON, Canada
phone: (705) 748-1011 x7882 fax: (705) 748-1569 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
May 5, 2009.
Open Letter to Parents, Teachers, School Boards.
Regarding Wi-Fi Networks in Schools
I am a scientist who does research on the health effects of electromagnetic radiation and I am becoming increasingly
concerned that a growing number of schools are installing WiFi networks and are making their school grounds
available for cell phone antennas.
You will be told by both the federal government (Health Canada and Industry Canada) as well as by the Wi-Fi
provider that this technology is safe provided that exposures to radio frequency radiation remain below federal
This information is outdated and incorrect based on the growing number of scientific publications that are
reporting adverse health and biological effects below our Safety Code 6 guidelines (see www.bioiniative.org) and
the growing number of scientific and medical organizations that are asking for stricter guidelines to be enforced.
For these reasons it is irresponsible to introduce Wi-Fi microwave radiation into a school environment where
young children spend hours each day.
1. GUIDELINES: Guidelines for microwave radiation (which is what is used in Wi-Fi) range 5 orders of
magnitude in countries around the world. The lowest guidelines are in Salzburg Austria and now in
Liechtenstein. The guideline in these countries is 0.1 microW/cm2. See short video ( http://videos.nextup.
org/SfTv/Liechtenstein/AdoptsTheStandardOf06VmBioInitiative/09112008.html). In Switzerland the
guideline is 1 and in Canada it is 1000 microW/cm2!
Why does Canada have guidelines that are so much higher than other countries? Canada's guidelines are based
on a short-term (6-minute) heating effect. It is assumed that if this radiation does not heat your tissue it is
"safe". This is not correct. Effects are documented at levels well below those that are able to heat body tissue.
See attached report: Analysis of Health and Environmental Effects of Proposed San Francisco Earthlink Wi-Fi
Network (2007). These biological effects include increased permeability of the blood brain barrier, increased
calcium flux, increase in cancer and DNA breaks, induced stress proteins, and nerve damage. Exposure to this
energy is associated with altered white blood cells in school children; childhood leukemia; impaired motor
function, reaction time, and memory; headaches, dizziness, fatigue, weakness, and insomnia.
2. ELECTRO-HYPER-SENSITIVITY: A growing population is adversely affected by these electromagnetic
frequencies. The illness is referred to as "electro-hyper-sensitivity" (EHS) and is recognized as a disability in
Sweden. The World Health Organization defines EHS as:
". . . a phenomenon where individuals experience adverse health effects while using or being in the vicinity of
devices emanating electric, magnetic, or electromagnetic fields (EMFs). . . EHS is a real and sometimes a
debilitating problem for the affected persons, while the level of EMF in their neighborhood is no greater than is
encountered in normal living environments. Their exposures are generally several orders of magnitude under
the limits in internationally accepted standards. "
Health Canada acknowledges in their Safety Code 6 guideline that some people are more sensitive to this form
of energy but they have yet to address this by revising their guidelines.
Symptoms of EHS include sleep disturbance, fatigue, pain, nausea, skin disorders, problems with eyes and ears
(tinnitus), dizziness, etc. It is estimated that 3% of the population are severely affected and another 35% have
moderate symptoms. Prolonged exposure may be related to sensitivity and for this reason it is imperative that
children's exposure to microwave radiation (Wi-Fi and mobile phones) be minimized as much as possible.
3. CHILDREN'S SENSITIVITY: Children are more sensitive to environmental contaminants and that includes
microwave radiation. The Stewart Report (2000) recommended that children not use cell phones except for
emergencies. The cell phone exposes your head to microwave radiation. A wireless computer (Wi-Fi) exposes
your entire upper body and if you have the computer on your lap it exposes your reproductive organs as well.
Certainly this is not desirable, especially for younger children and teenagers. For this reason we need to
discourage the use of wireless technology by children, especially in elementary schools. That does not mean
that students cannot go on the Internet. It simply means that access to the Internet needs to be through wires
rather than through the air (wireless, Wi-Fi).
4. REMOVAL OF WI-FI: Most people do not want to live near either cell phone antennas or Wi-Fi antennas
because of health concerns. Yet when Wi-Fi (wireless routers) are used inside buildings it is similar to the
antenna being inside the building rather than outside and is potentially much worse with respect to exposure
since you are closer to the source of emission.
Libraries in France are removing Wi-Fi because of concern from both the scientific community and their
employees and patrons.
The Vancouver School Board (VSB) passed a resolution in January 2005 that prohibits construction of cellular
antennas within 1000 feet (305 m) from school property.
Palm Beach, Florida, Los Angeles, California, and New Zealand have all prohibited cell phone base stations and
antennas near schools due to safety concerns. The decision not to place cell antennas near schools is based on
the likelihood that children are more susceptible to this form of radiation. Clearly if we do not want antennas
"near" schools", we certainly do not want antennas "inside" schools! The safest route is to have wired
internet access rather than wireless. While this is the more costly alternative in the short-term it is the least
costly alternative in the long run if we factor in the cost of ill health of both teachers and students.
5. ADVISORIES: Advisories to limit cell phone use have been issued by the various countries and organizations
including the UK (2000), Germany (2007), France, Russia, India, Belgium (2008) as well as the Toronto Board
of Health (July 2008) and the Pittsburgh Cancer Institute (July 2008). While these advisories relate to cell
phone use, they apply to Wi-Fi exposure as well since both use microwave radiation. If anything, Wi-Fi
computers expose more of the body to this radiation than do cell phones.
6. PRECAUTIONARY PRINCIPLE: Even those who do not "accept" the science showing adverse biological
effects of microwave exposure should recognize the need to be careful with the health of children. For this
reason we have the Precautionary Principle, which states:
In order to protect the environment, the precautionary approach shall be widely applied by States according to
their capability. Where there are threats of serious or irreversible damage, lack of full scientific certainty shall
not be used as a reason for postponing cost effective measures to prevent environmental degradation.
In this case "States" refers to the School Board and those who make decisions about the health of children.
The two most important environments in a child's life are the home (especially the bedroom) and the school. For
this reason it is imperative that these environments remain as safe as possible. If we are to err, please let us err on
the side of caution.
Dr. Magda Havas,
May 5, 2009
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