FARMERS: Warn Me Before You Spray,
- May 5, 2000
I, like the majority of non-farming
Glanbrook residents, live on property that borders a great tract of farmland.
Though my family enjoys the rural lifestyle immensely, each spring our concerns
mount over the perennial practice of pesticide/herbicide application to this
There is no need to beat to death the fact that these chemicals
pose very serious health risks, especially to children. What should be
revisited is the fact that significant amounts of the chemicals sprayed, waft
onto adjoining residential properties during application and, thus, affect
families both during and after the application.
parents, we (like other residents) make an effort to find out when spraying
will be done, so that we may protect our children and ourselves from direct
contact with these substances. However, these queries can often be met with
great defensiveness and rancour. This leads me to believe that some farmers
forget or overlook their moral and ethical obligation to the community.
No one will argue that today's farmers have it tough. Nor can anyone ignore
their fundamental right to choose agriculture as their livelihood. But certain
farmers need to be reminded that, just like any business, they have an
undeniable ethical responsibility to inform the community of any potentially
hazardous or harmful consequence precipitated by the operation of their
Mounting evidence shows significant links between
pesticide/herbicide application and such diseases as cancer and Parkinson's. In
light of this alone, it isn't too much to ask for a farmer to forewarn the
community (or at very least the residents neighboring his land) when he is
going to spray. It just seems like good, old-fashioned common sense.
Bernard Frazer, Canadians Against Pesticides