A message from Kirkendall resident Sylvia Marechal:
My name is Sylvia Marechal.
Three years ago my mother-in-law was diagnosed with Lymphoma cancer. Her doctors linked the cancer with harmful facets in the environment; such as pesticides.
A few months after we heard the devastating news, our first child was born. I did my first walk with our daughter on the Bruce Trail (behind the Chedoke Golf course). Suddenly I was confronted with a horrible smell followed by Pesticide Warning Signs. I turned around and went straight home. I felt I had to do something. Not only because I was personally affected, but also to warn other citizens. We live so close to the golf course. Many people with young children and dogs go for hikes or bike on the trails and they could be impacted; not to mention what pesticides do to our fauna and flora.
Via a neighbour, I got in touch with Green Venture and the Hamilton Coalition on Pesticide Issues. I hosted an educational evening at our house for neighbours, friends and family. Three years later we still see the signs. So, education alone is not enough. We need to see a by-law that bans the use of pesticides on private and public places, including golf courses.
This time I want to act on behalf of my Kirkendall neighbourhood and other concerned citizens of Hamilton.
I am looking for people who want to help me with handing out pamphlets, posters and a petition.
Please contact me via my email email@example.com or phone 905-527-6765
Thank you in advance,
On April 23, 2004, the Ontario College of Family Physicians reviewed the scientific research on links between pesticide and disease. Their principal findings:
Many studies reviewed by the Ontario College show positive associations between solid tumours and pesticide exposure, including brain cancer, prostate cancer, kidney cancer and pancreatic cancer, among others.
- Previous studies have pointed to certain pesticides, such as 2,4-D and related pesticides, as possible precipitants of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL), and the findings of the College’s review are clearly consistent with this.
- It is clear from the review that an association exists between pesticide exposure and leukemia. According to the College, the implication of pesticides in the development of leukemia warrants further investigation and also, political action.
- The review team uncovered a remarkable consistency of findings of nervous system effects of pesticide exposures.
- Occupational exposure to agricultural chemicals may be associated with adverse reproductive effects including: birth defects, fetal death and intrauterine growth retardation.
Flawless lawns and weed-free gardens are important to many Kirkendall residents – just take a walk through our neighbourhood – and there’s no doubt that some of these beautiful results are achieved with the use of pesticides.
However, some studies have suggested that most pesticide exposure comes about through diet. One study in particular (PDF) found that concentrations of pesticides in children dropped significantly when they were switched to an organic diet.
What do you think? Do you support a ban on pesticide use on Hamilton? If so, do you think the ban should apply only to cosmetic pesticide usage (such as lawns, golf courses and parks), or should it extend to agricultural producers in the Hamilton area as well?
Hamilton Police have arrested a suspect in the recent series of incidents where an individual was using a power drill to puncture automobiles in the Kirkendall and Durand neighbourhoods. An update from the police:
On Friday April 13th, 2007, the following male was arrested for attempting to drill a hole into a parked vehicle in the Durand neighbourhood. Uniform officers arrested the male after he fled on his bicycle, in the area still carrying the drill. He remains in custody for a bail hearing. If released we are asking for strict conditions.
Ammar AL ZUBAIDI
resident of Hamilton
charges: mischief under $5000.00 X 3, attempt mischief under $5000.00
The following is a message from Brian McHattie’s office:
The following outlines the decisions taken at the Ward 1 Leash Free Facility meeting held on March 19:
It was decided to create a Free Running Area at the Hill Street Park at Dundurn Street South and Hill Street. This park meets the criteria set out in the City’s Leash Free policy.
(The Policy can be viewed in Appendix A of the report to Council found here [PDF].)
Hill Street Park is the only park in Ward 1 that meets the leash free criteria.
Note that a Free Running Area (use controlled by hours and time of year) is in contrast to a Dog Park model (fenced area). City Staff indicated however, that some fencing will be installed at the corner of Dundurn and Hill, and the fencing that already exists along the CPR tracks will be inspected to ensure it is entirely intact.
The proposed hours for the facility are 6:00 to 9:00 a.m. and 8:00 to 11:00 p.m. There will also be regulatory and advisory signage posted at the park.
Councillor McHattie recommended forming a Leash Free Park Volunteer Committee to assist the councillor in managing the park. Five people volunteered at the meeting. If you are interested in participating, please contact Dale at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Leash Free policy states that “All parks will be evaluated once within the first year of operation, and once every two years thereafter to determine if further action is required to improve or remove the dog park designation.”
Next steps include a report for Council’s approval, an amended animal control by-law and park setup, including signage fabrication and installation. We will advise, once the park is operational (tentatively sometime in the summer).
At this time, no consideration will be given to the initial proposal of a Free Running area at Highland Gardens Park/The Rez, since it does not meet the City’s Leash Free criteria. However, Councillor McHattie continues to encourage dialogue in the community, and the one-year review of the Hill Street Park Free Running Area location will enable further examination of Ward 1 leash-free options.