Israel Mayor disconnects WIFI in Schools and Kindergartens
The mayor of Haifa (in Israel) ordered to disconnect WiFi in schools and kindergartens – until examining the safety of WiFi thoroughly
Yona Yahav, the mayor of Haifa with children
Haifa municipality disconnects WiFi in kindergartens and schools in the city
The disconnect is until a thorough examination of WiFi safety is done
Haifa’s mayor, Yona Yahav, ordered in coordination with the head of education department, Ilana Truck, to immediately disconnect WiFi in educational system until a thorough examination of the subject. At the same time, Yahav guided to advance the installation of wired safer system.
Yahav: “The education system in Haifa is full of network computers and new, advanced technological systems. However, regarding anything that relates to our children, if there is doubt- there is no doubt. We must take excessive precaution.
As long as the argument on real danger was not refuted, I ordered to disconnect all the devices in kindergartens and in schools. In order not to prevent advanced technology from the children, we will act to activate safe wired system”.
In recent years, the internet media has become part of our daily lives. The use of cell phones, smart phones and computers is gaining momentum among a wide range of ages, where children is an especially sensitive population to environmental effects among them exposure to electromagnetic radiation (non ionizing radiation).
Since the publication of the State Comptroller report in December 2014 on the subject “handling electromagnetic radiation in the education systems by local authorities and private owners”, all relevant bodies were recruited to measure radiation in all schools in the country.
Haifa municipality states, that “the education system has advanced computers system of the highest level. They are under control and stand in annual measurements and until today the results were lower than the demand of the existing standard. ”
In view of this, and as long as it was not proven that WiFi radiation is dangerous, a discussion has started in the municipality to take precaution and receive answers from the governmental ministries.
Haifa municipality is organizing a conference for the next month, on radiation from cell phones and smart phones, in order to give knowledge to the public on wireless emitting technologies and their effects. The conference will deal with creating a policy for educated use of cell phones in the education system in Haifa. Part of the conference will be dedicated to radiation from Wi-Fi. This week, in coordination with the head of the city’s education system, Ilana Truck, Yahav ordered to disconnect immediately the WiFi in kindergartens and schools in Haifa until a thorough examination of the subject is done. These days the education system is preparing to gradually install wired system as an alternative in all education system in the city. These will be installed in the first stage in classrooms where pupils learn for the final exams that force use of computers, so they won’t be harmed from the disconnect. The teachers in elementary schools in the city took on themselves to load every evening the studies material from the internet, so that pupils are not exposed and their studies won’t be harmed. Dr. Mona Nofi-Naama, head of non ionizing radiation issue, in the Cities Association Haifa Bay for environmental protection: “According to the precautionary principle, it is needed to reduce the exposure to non ionizing radiation as much as possible, among the rest also WiFi, by reducing the use of wireless networks and to prefer in every opportunity wired connection rather than wireless. The standards relate to thermal effect only, while here the subject is health effects that do not relate to heating that are in low levels below the standard, but were not defined.
Italian town shuts down Wi-Fi over health fears
Published: 08 Jan 2016 10:51 GMT+01:00
The mayor of Borgofranco d’Ivrea, a town in Piedmont, has ordered Wi-Fi to be turned off in two schools over health fears.”
Mayor Livio Tola told the town’s high school and elementary school to return to using cables to connect to the internet after reading that the electromagnetic waves given off by wireless routers were especially harmful to young children.
“It’s not that we’re against technology, our choice is merely a precautionary measure,” La Stampa reported the mayor as saying.
“We cannot say with certainty if these electromagnetic waves are dangerous for children or not,” he added, acknowledging that there was still a lack of scientific consensus on the issue.
The World Health Organization has recognized the “anxiety and speculation” surrounding electromagnetic field exposure, but is still investigating its possible health affects.
But some studies have suggested that electromagnetic radiation given off by wireless routers can affect the development of cells in young children, enough to convince Tola to shut Wi-Fi off in the two schools in the town of 3,800 inhabitants.
“Who knows? In 20 years’ time some people might thank us for it,” the mayor added.
But the controversial decision prompted a backlash from councillors and some parents, who argue that even if wireless signals prove to be harmful, the measure will do little to protect the town’s children.
They also argue that it prevents wireless devices, such as tablets, being used in classes as educational tools.
Ontario school bans Wi-Fi
Last Updated: October 18, 2010 8:29am
A school in southern Ontario is the first in Canada to ban Wi-Fi over health concerns, despite Health Canada’s assurances it’s perfectly safe.
Parents at St. Vincent Euphrasia elementary school in Meaford, Ont., voted to ban Wi-Fi transmitters, after some students reported feeling ill after they were installed.
“After learning the whole story about how risky WiFi is, parents voted to protect their children’s health and plug the computers back in with hardwires,” said Andrew Couper, a member of the elected school council. “This is something every school council across Canada should be questioning.”
Health Canada, however, insists Wi-Fi is not dangerous and notes there is no evidence to suggest otherwise. Wi-Fi in Canada remains far below government-mandates levels, which stem from thousands of peer-reviewed journals.
“Wi-Fi is the second most prevalent form of wireless technology next to cell phones. It is widely used across Canada in schools, offices, coffee shops, personal dwellings, as well as countless other locations. Health Canada continues to reassure Canadians that the radiofrequency energy emitted from Wi-Fi equipment is extremely low and is not associated with any health problems,” Health Canada said in a statement.
2008: Lakehead University, Ontario bans Wi-Fi on campus. – news source
Lakehead Says No to WiFi
Lakehead University takes a precautionary approach to the widespread application of WiFi technology
By Eleanor Abaya and Fred Gilbert
Last fall, Lakehead University held a Town Hall Meeting to provide information on its policy on high-frequency wireless local area network technology commonly known as WiFi (short for “wireless fidelity”).
Lakehead’s policy states that there will be no use of WiFi in those areas of the University already served by hard wire connectivity until such time as the potential health effects have been scientifically rebutted or there are adequate protective measures that can be taken.
Eleanor Abaya, Lakehead’s Director of Communications, met with Lakehead University President Fred Gilbert after the meeting to discuss his concerns over the effects of long-term exposure to WiFi electromagnetic fields, and his approach in limiting wireless connectivity based on the precautionary principle.
Eleanor Abaya: What is your main concern about wireless networks?
Fred Gilbert: Potential health effects! There are now so many peer-reviewed studies demonstrating biological effects that it is difficult to imagine that there are no negative health effects.
Abaya: What do you say to critics of your position who say that, according to Health Canada and other sources, there are no health concerns about wireless technologies?
Gilbert: Get your heads out of the sand! Read the literature – a great starting point is the Bio Initiative Report – www.bioinitiative.org. What that report clearly demonstrates is that the standards that are supposed to protect us are set too high in North America.
Abaya: Lakehead prides itself in being a leader in offering advanced communications technology for teaching and learning. Does our current WiFi policy not threaten this leadership position and project the image that we at Lakehead are technologically backward?
Gilbert: Lakehead has demonstrated clearly a commitment to being at the forefront of technological advancement. We were one of the first Canadian universities to put in place VOIP (voice over internet protocol) telephony, and we are still one of the largest Canadian deployments of VOIP. We have developed classroom learning technology with partners Sony, IBM, Precision Camera, and others. We acquired a Cray supercomputer early on and an SGI-based virtual reality laboratory (among others).
Both the Thunder Bay and Orillia campuses are hardwired with fibre optic connectivity. WiFi is a convenience, not a necessity in such an environment. We have permitted the Lakehead University Student Union to provide this convenience in student-controlled space on the Thunder Bay campus – The Outpost – provided the site is posted as a WiFi hotspot and the radiation does not impinge on areas outside The Outpost.
Abaya: What infrastructure is currently in place for connectivity at Lakehead?
Gilbert: Lakehead University data communications network supports all administration, research, and academic needs. The network encompasses over 66 wiring closets, 290 Ethernet switches, and over 7,500 network connections.
The infrastructure is tied together over a multi-gigabyte fibre-optic backbone. Computers, cameras, environmental controls, and over 2,600 IP phones are just some of the devices using TCP/IP as the standard for connecting across this network.
Lakehead also maintains connections to high-speed research networks ORION, CANet4, and other commercial internet providers. Connectivity to the Orillia campus and remote offices exists over leased and dedicated Ethernet infrastructure.
Our overall connectivity infrastructure is as modern and efficient as anywhere in the Ontario university system.
2010: Surrey, BC Roots and Wings Montessori Place removes Wi-Fi – news source
Schools — Wired or Wireless?
November 1, 2010
As a long-time principal of an independent school, I see the health and safety of our children as a non-negotiable responsibility. As technology contributes to ever-changing environmental influences, it’s often a challenge to stay informed to the degree required to protect ourselves, and particularly our vulnerable children. I was therefore very appreciative of the information provided by “Citizens for Safe Technology”.
Although there is far from universal agreement as to the dangers of wireless technology, and there are many with vested interests in its continued use, evidence of its harmful effects is extensive and widespread. The default position must therefore be on the side of safety. One wouldn’t consider using a chemical substance without knowing for absolute certainty that it could cause no harm, even if many people considered it safe and it had many benefits. By the same token, the benefits of wireless technology cannot be responsibly utilized when there is any evidence of harm, let alone the overwhelming information we now have of potential damage.
Changes in complex systems, such as the public school system, can be dangerously slow. I’m grateful that I had the autonomy to make the right decision for our students. On educating myself through the information provided me, I immediately removed all wireless technology from our school and banned the use of cell phones within our building. It was not a major change to hard-wire all computers. In our older classes, every child has a laptop, which connects to the internet through one of several hard-wired internet collections. We have advanced technology without any of the dangers of wireless radiowaves.
I am happy to discuss this decision with anyone who may be interested.
Kristin Cassie, Principal
Roots and Wings Montessori Place
2008: Voice (UK Teachers Union) calls for a ban on Wi-Fi in schools. – news source
2009: Hérouville Saint-Clair, France: Bans Wi-Fi in public schools. – news source
2009: Irish Doctors Environmental Association: Warns that current safety guidelines are “not appropriate.” – news source
2009: Karnataka State, India: Bans cell phones in all schools and pre-university colleges.- news source
Ballinderry Primary School, Ireland: Removed Wi-Fi to protect the children.
Bavaria, Germany: Recommends no Wi-Fi in schools.
Frankfurt, Germany: Bans Wi-Fi in public schools.
National Library of France: Removed Wi-Fi and installed only cable connections
Paris, France: Removed Wi-Fi from four libraries.
Prebandal Preparatory School, Chichester, England: Removed Wi-Fi from its campus
Progressive Librarians Guild: Recommends no wireless technology in libraries
Sainte-Geneviève University, Paris: Removed Wi-Fi from its library.
Salzburg, Austria: Bans Wi-Fi in public schools.
Sebastopol, California: Broke its contract to install citywide Wi-Fi.
Stowe School, Buckinghamshire, England: Removed Wi-Fi from campus.
UK Department of Education: Children under 16 should not use cell phones except in an emergency.
University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute: Children should never use a cell phone except in an emergency.
Voice (UK Teachers Union): Calls for a ban on Wi-Fi in schools.
Ysgol Pantycelyn School, Carmarthenshirem, Wales: Removed Wi-Fi from campus.