INDEPENDENT NEWS

OSH report confirms spray fears

Published: Fri 28 Nov 2003 02:57 PM
OSH report confirms spray fears
The Green Party is calling for all aerial spray programmes over Hamilton and Auckland to be put on hold, following a damning Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) report on the effects of the spray on staff at Hamilton's Fraser High School.
The OSH report found failings with Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF) medical reporting systems, and with medical consultations by MAF doctors. It found MAF's medical support services had failed to detect an "extraordinary" incidence of allergies at the school since the spraying programme started.
"Effectively, the same Foray 48B chemical cocktail is being used by MAF to tackle Auckland's Painted Apple Moth infestation and Hamilton's supposed Asian Gypsy Moth infestation," said Ian Ewen-Street, the Green Bio-security spokesperson.
"We have argued from the beginning that these spray programmes are a massive over-kill that puts the health of the community at risk.
"Foray 48B is a toxic compound that is understood to include ingredients such as hydrochloric acid and propylene glycol, a chemical commonly found in antifreeze and brake fluid. It is irresponsible that this concoction should be sprayed over any habitation, let alone our schools.
"MAF has shown contempt in ignoring the warning of health experts and the wishes of the community," said Mr Ewen-Street. "This OSH report is just another chapter in the volume of evidence against the use of this dangerous spray.
"Thousands of Aucklanders and Hamiltonians have already fallen ill from the effects of Foray48B and had their lives massively disrupted. MAF should admit its mistake in dousing communities with the spray, and call a halt to its programmes before hundreds more children and adults pay the price of its arrogance."
ENDS

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