United Educators of San Francisco Webinar on Technology Safety in Schools
Theodora Scarato, Executive Director of Environmental Health Trust and Dr. Cindy Russell of Physicians For Safe Technology presented a webinar for UESF on technology in schools. UESF educators may sign up to participate in this webinar with a live Q and A afterwards and receive continuing education credit.
The subject areas covered in the webinar include:
- A review of the United Educators of San Francisco Resolution on Technology Safety that addresses wireless radiation
- A review of the scientific evidence on health effects of wireless radiation.
- Recommendations for schools on how they can reduce radiofrequency radiation exposures.
- Examples of actions and reports by teacher unions in North America to protect students and staff.
- International and and US policy that addresses radiofrequency radiation and works to reduce exposures.
- Examples of schools banning cell phones in classrooms.
- Examples of schools and governments banning Wi-Fi in classrooms.
- Published resources and recommended videos to learn more.
Please watch the webinar here with added referenced videos and news clippings below.
RESOURCES FROM WEBINAR
Where is a copy of the UESF Resolution and press release?
The UESF resolution became official as of May 23rd, 2018. The “Resolution on Enhancing Technology Safety in San Francisco Unified School District” and press release be found on UESF website.
Where are the California Department of Health (CDPH) Cell Phone Guidelines?
The new three-page CDPH guidance includes practical steps to reduce exposure to cell phone radiation, including keeping the phone away from the body, reducing cell phone use when the signal is weak, reducing the use of cell phones to stream videos and not sleeping with your cell phone.
- California Department of Health Cell Phone Advisory PDF “How to Reduce Exposure to Radiofrequency Energy from Cell Phones”
- Press Release ”California Department of Health Issues Guidelines on How to Reduce Exposure to Radiofrequency Energy from Cell Phones”
- Drafts of CDPH cell phone advice from 2009 to 2017 from Dr. Moskowitz FOIA request.
Top Resources on the Health Risks of Wi-Fi in Schools
- Questions and Answers on Wi-Fi and Cell Phones in Schools: This two pager is filled with links and resources on why and how to reduce wireless radiation exposure at schools.
- Checklist on How to Reduce EMF and Wireless Radiation for Schools: A list of actionable steps every school can take to eliminate and reduce EMF exposure at school.
- Please see Physicians For Safe Technology (Executive Director Dr. Cindy Russell) website at mdsafetech.org
What are best practices for schools?
- CHPS Low EMF Criteria Fact Sheet: The Collaborative for High Performance Schools has developed Best Practices for LOW EMF classrooms that details how schools can replace wireless networks with wired networks.
- Upper Sturt Primary School WiFi and Cell Phone Policy: The Upper Sturt School has an excellent safe technology policy on WiFi and Wireless that can be used as a template for other private schools looking for an example of how to approach this issue.
- Castle Hill High School P&C Committee recommendations to reduce cell phone wireless exposure for students and staff.
- List of schools internationally taking action to ensure a safer school environment by eliminating or reducing wireless.
- EHT has developed a short list of key actions that teachers, staff and policymakers can act on to mitigate the EMF in classrooms.
What do medical doctors recommend?
Doctors recommend reducing EMF in the classroom as much as possible. As dozens of scientists state in their letters (compiled by Environmental Health Trust here) wired networks and corded phones are an important part of a safe and healthy school. For example, read letters to Petaluma Public Schools: Dr. Carpenter, Dr. Anthony Miller, Dr. Martha Herbert, Dr. Lennart Hardell
- Over 250 medical doctors are calling on the United Nations for urgent action on this issue. Please read their published appeal at the European Journal of Oncology (read the list of doctors signing.)
- The American Academy of Pediatrics has repeatedly written the US government calling for cell phone/wireless radiofrequency radiation exposure limits to be updated to protect children who are more vulnerable. Read the American Academy of Pediatrics Letter to US Representative Dennis Kucinich in Support of the Cell Phone Right to Know Act and the Time Magazine News Article – “Pediatricians Say Cell Phone Radiation Standards Need Another Look”
- The EPA recognized educational campaign The BabySafe Project has a statement now signed by over 250 doctors and educators urging pregnant women to reduce wireless exposure to minimize risks to their babies’ brain development. A medical research team at Yale, led by Dr. Hugh Taylor, Chief of Obstetrics at Yale Medicine, found radiofrequency radiation exposure led to higher hyperactivity, poorer memory, and altered brain function—corroborating prior published research findings of altered brain development after exposure.
What other printable resources can I use to share this with others?
- What Parents Need to Know About Safe Technology
- Do’s and Dont’s for Safe Technology,
- How to Reduce Cell Phone Radiation Postcard
- Colorful Posters (8 by 11): Children and tablets, Teens and sleep, Keeping cell phones out of the pants pocket (PDF), Keep cell phones out of bras.
- The New Jersey Education Association published “Minimize health risks from electronic devices” and issued a PDF of these recommendations
Where can I find the articles mentioned in the webinar by Dr. Russell?
We highly recommend the Santa Clara Medical Association articles: “Wifi In Schools: Are We playing It Safe With Our Kids?” and “Shallow Minds: How the Internet and Wi Fi in Schools Can Affect Learning”
Any other articles on schools, cell phones and health that I can I recommend for parents?
- Boston Parents Newspaper: “Is School Wi-Fi Safe?”
- “The Kids are Not All Right. How Wireless Tech Is Harming Our Youth And What Parents Can Do Right Now “(Paleo Magazine)
- “Minimize health risks from electronic devices” The New Jersey Education Association
- “I Am an EMF Refugee” Notre Dame Magazine
- “Former Miss India goes Ballistic on Wi-Fi in Schools”-The Hindu Business Line
- The Link Between Wireless Radiation and a Host of Serious Illnesses” Vitality Magazine, Frank Clegg, former president of Microsoft Canada
How do I reduce exposure at home?
- Learn more on this webpage on how to reduce exposure at home.
What schools are banning cell phones?
- EHT has a list of schools banning cell phones here.
Where do I find published science on this issue?
- Environmental Health Trust has research here, Dr. Moskowitz has research here, Physicians for Safe Technology has lists of research on their website as well at MDSafeTech Wi-Fi Radiation Health Effects and Cancer and Radiofrequency-Scientific Literature, Nervous System Effects-Scientific Literature and more.
- Please see a letter that details the importance of schools addressing safer technology here.
Why have I never heard of this and why is the US government not telling us about this issue?
- Please read about how the cell phone companies are like the tobacco companies by reading this Harvard Press Book “Captured Agency: How the Federal Communications Commission is Dominated by the Industries it Presumably Regulates” by Norm Alster. Harvard Edmund J. Safra Center for Ethics (2015) “Consumer safety, health, and privacy, along with consumer wallets, have all been overlooked, sacrificed, or raided due to unchecked industry influence.”
What videos can I watch to learn more?
- New York State Teachers Union Webinar “Risks of wireless technologies and protecting children and staff in schools”
- Read the Press Release on Best Practices For Schools prepared for NYSUT
- Generation Zapped: This film is an excellent introduction to the issue and many schools are screening the film to educate the school community.
- Wi-Fried: ABC Catalyst Documentary on Wi-Fi and Children
- Rapid Fire – What Brain and Sperm Share and Why Care About Cell Phone Radiation| Dr. Devra Davis | TEDxJacksonHole
- 60 seconds on American Academy of Pediatrics Recommendations to Reduce Cell Phone Radiation Exposure.
- Youtube Playlist on Wi-Fi in Schools: News Reports on schools removing the Wi-Fi and scientific lectures.