After hearing evidence on the harms of 5G, the Board of Representatives in Stamford, Connecticut voted to reject new 5G equipment installations on city utility poles. The proposed agreement would have allowed AT&T and Verizon to install 5G equipment on utility poles throughout the city. However, an overwhelming majority of the city’s representatives (21 of 34) decided that the risks of electromagnetic radiation were a greater threat to the city and the people’s health. This debacle highlights the importance of establishing strong informed consent principles when an individual's health is involved with society-wide impacts. The 34 representatives were presented with evidence of wireless radiation’s negative health impacts. Six independent experts presented scientific evidence detailing the harms that are caused by radio-frequency radiation.
One of the experts was toxicologist and epidemiologist Devra Davis, Ph.D., MPH, founder, and president of Environmental Health Trust (EHT). She provided overwhelming evidence that wireless radiation causes brain damage, memory loss, DNA damage and reproductive harms. Wireless radiation was also shown to have environmental impacts, including harms to insect populations and honeybees. Specifically, 5G can cause an organism’s tissues to heat up which, disrupting their normal functions.
In an interview with the Defender, Davis said, “Confronted with overwhelming, independent scientific information about the real and present dangers of bringing electromagnetic fields closer to humans than ever before, Stamford voted to protect people and their environment.”
She added, “We should stop debating whether we have proof of human harm, and take steps now to prevent that harm from spreading.”
The greatest damage is caused at the cellular level, in the form of oxidative stress. This free radical damage can lead to chronic inflammation and host of health issues, from neurodegenerative diseases, to chromosomal damage, and sperm damage. These risks were also confirmed by Dr. Rob Brown, an orthopedic radiology specialist, B. Blake Levitt, a science journalist, Theodora Scarato, EHT’s executive director, Kent Chamberlin, Ph.D., past chair and professor emeritus in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the University of New Hampshire, and Joseph Sandri, a telecom regulatory attorney.
One of the representatives of the city, Don Mays, warned that Verizon and AT&T could sue the city if they do not go forward with their 5G plans. At an October 18 meeting, Mays said, "Until that technology [that emits wireless radiation] changes in the marketplace, we are essentially going to have to accept it." He cited a 2018 ruling by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) which blocks states and municipalities from impeding or delaying the rollout of 5G technology.
Mays added, "If cities try to go against the FCC rules, the carriers will sue the cities … And I don’t think we want to subject this city to that."
Another representative, James Grunberger disagreed with Mays. He doesn’t believe that the FCC can unilaterally mandate 5G on all cities across the United States, especially cities that are looking to protect the people in the community from documented health risks. At the October 18 meeting, Grunberger said, "I don’t think we should back away from this because of the threat of a lawsuit … If we have to be a test case on this, we should be a test case." In a follow-up meeting in November, Grunberger doubled down on his stance. "The federal government does not have guidelines for long-term exposure, so we need to protect our city ourselves, and not succumb to legal threats," he said.
Other representatives said they want "some type of concrete consensus" before they gamble the health of their children and the health of their constituents. These antennae are scheduled to go up near homes and schools without limitations. Once they are installed, they would operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, so it is of utmost importance to establish humanitarian principles if everyone's health is going to be impacted in the city, especially those who live and work nearby the 5G antennae.