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Manawatu school removes wi-fi over cancer fear

NBR Staff
Mon, 30 Dec 2014

Two Manawatu fathers have won a major battle in their fight to have wi-fi removed from their local school, TVNZ reports.

Fathers Damon Wyman and David Bird have been leading a campaign to remove the wireless networking from Te Horo School and replace it with cable-based internet due to concerns it could cause cancer and other health problems.

Science Media Centre manager Peter Griffin says the death of Te Horo pupil Ethan Wyman from a brain tumour was a tragedy for his family, friends and school mates, but that to blame it on wi-fi is wrong.

Mr Griffin notes there is no evidence anywhere in peer-reviewed literature to suggest wi-fi signals pose an elevated risk of developing brain cancers.

The fathers say they are getting a broad range of support, however. "We've been inundated from health professionals from all around the world, and so have the board, all expressing their concern with wi-fi, and advocated for it to be removed from our school," Mr Wyman, told the TVNZ.

In a statement, the Te Horo School board said it would take wi-fi out of junior classes and replace it with ethernet cable. However, wi-fi will not be removed from the senior school due to the wishes of parents who were surveyed on the issue.

The board says it shares the government's view that wi-fi is safe.

"We have sourced information from the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Health and other submissions," the board's statement says.

"Based on this information the board believes that Wi-Fi does not pose a health risk to staff or students."

My Wyman and Mr Bird continue to advocate for the total removal of the system at Te Horo School.

NBR Staff
Mon, 30 Dec 2014
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Manawatu school removes wi-fi over cancer fear