Updated: Jan 6
Video of my delegation to Regina City Council opposing new cell towers in the city and requesting that unsafe towers currently in existence be moved out of areas where people live, work, go to school, or access public services, etc.
August 17, 2022
I recently presented a delegation to the City Council in my city on the dangers of cell towers and the 5G rollout (video and link above). I was speaking as an electromagnetically sensitive resident who is already being harmed by existing towers and radiation levels and who would without a doubt be harmed by new cell towers - particularly 5G-equipped towers - in the city. There were eight delegations presenting on cell tower dangers and one delegation hoping for the green light on 5G cell towers. That delegation was made up of SaskTel employees. SaskTel is the major telecommunications company in Saskatchewan. It was a long and frustrating road to get to the point where I could speak to the elected representatives on this matter, and my experience is an illustration of the many barriers people are facing when attempting to communicate within government bureaucracies. There is a lack of transparency, a lack of public consultation, a lack of public engagement, a lack of meaningful two-way or group communication, and an excess of bureaucratic hoops to jump through.
I'm a professional writer with a journalism and research background, so if I find it difficult-to-impossible to navigate the system and its jargon and rules, I know the vast majority of others will find it too frustrating and energy-intensive to even bother participating. This is a major problem. To start with, I had no idea this meeting on the city's cell tower protocols was even occurring, and I'm certain this was the case for almost all residents of this city. By chance, a woman messaged me on social media because she had seen me posting information about 5G and cell towers previously. She suggested I apply to be a delegation - the only way the public can speak at a City Council meeting. Now, I don't agree with this policy - that members of the public be required to apply to be a delegation just to communicate with their representatives at a public meeting. (I also don't agree to be represented by any other person. The only person who represents me is me. But I digress...) This is the City Hall protocol that seems to be in place in different cities in Canada. I ran into the same thing in the previous province in which I lived.
For the past few months, both my mother and I have emailed the Mayor and all members of City Council repeatedly on the issue of cell towers and the 5G rollout. Neither of us has ever received a response or an acknowledgement that the members had received or read our emails. I have also sent paper copies of information on 5G to all members of Council. Again, I have received no response. There are no telephone numbers listed for the Mayor or City Councillors, so (unanswered, unacknowledged) email seems to be our only avenue. To speak at a City Council meeting, a person has only five minutes to speak on a topic, no matter how complex that topic may be. We're required to submit the information we'd like to present ahead of time, by a certain deadline. I assume people can be turned down as delegations, but I'm not sure of the criteria used.
I spent nearly an entire day writing, editing, and timing my delegation, cutting it down to the absolute bare bones so that it would fit within the five minute time limit. Once I submitted my delegation information, I called the general City Clerk's office number to follow up to make sure it had been received. It's a good thing I did since it had not been received. My email was in the Junk Mail folder. The person I talked to said she would pass the email on to the person who needed to see it.
The next day, I received an email telling me that unfortunately, I could not apply to be a delegation for this meeting. There was some technical reason given for this that I only vaguely understand.
I wrote an email back saying how incredibly disappointed and unimpressed I was with the whole process. I then contacted local media, asking them to cover the story, including why we were being turned down as delegations.
(Local media did the usual gloss over of this story, not mentioning a single health concern, citing a single study, or reporting one bit of the information I or others presented about the opposition to the 5G rollout. As you can see from the linked article, the "reporter" did not even bother to fully quote or name the electro-sensitive delegates, tacking a vague two lines on at the very end of the article. This is insulting and condescending to the delegates, myself included, and it's also complicit. This treatment is not surprising considering the abysmal state of mass media these days but should still be noted.)
Honestly, I was very pissed off at this point. I could not believe how many barriers there were to getting this life and death information across to the members of City Council. The following day, I received another email. The person had followed up on this for clarification, and it turned out we could apply to be delegations at the meeting, after all. She was mistaken when she said we could not.
Mistakes happen. But this goes to show just how precarious the whole system can be where one incorrect bureaucratic detail could stop people from bringing critically important information forward to City Council. If that's "just the way the system is," then that is not good enough.
I was eventually accepted as a delegation and presented my information when called upon at the August 17 meeting. I noticed the councillors had multiple questions for the "official organizations" who presented but had zero questions for me, despite me presenting more complex and detailed information than any other delegation. This was the case for most of the individuals presenting delegations against the cell towers, especially those who have electromagnetic sensitivity. We were quite obviously being ignored or downplayed. There were some NIMBYs in the delegations (Not In My Backyard) who simply wanted the cell towers to be placed in other neighbourhoods, not in their own. There also seemed to be much more concern about how cell towers might adversely affect wildlife than how cell tower radiation is already adversely affecting human beings who live in the city! After my presentation, the only response was my own city councillor arguing one of the points I made in the delegation. This councillor had been quoted in local media stating that the aesthetic ugliness of the cell towers could be the only objection from the public. After my presentation, he argued that he said aesthetic ugliness was the only area over which City Council had jurisdiction.
His quote in media was: "Nobody can possibly object to 5G or the advantages that it will bring, ... the issue is where we put these terribly ugly towers. That’s where we as councillors have a choice."
Based on that quote, it seemed to me that he was stating his support for the 5G rollout in the city, putting forth the assertion that no one could possibly have an objection to the wonders this rollout would bring, other than the aesthetics of the towers. Regardless, the statement that no one could possibly object to 5G or the advantages it would bring to the city was, quite obviously, incorrect.
I asked if I could respond to his statement/argument. I was told I could not.
I was then told there were no questions for me from the councilors (again, despite presenting the most complex and detailed information of any delegation). I asked if I could ask a question of Council. I was told I could not.
This hilarious charade was a clear illustration of the barriers to effective communication members of the public experience when trying to engage with government bureaucracies at any level.
I could present a delegation of five minutes in length, but I could not communicate in any other way to my so-called elected representatives. Later, when I was taking a bathroom break, a woman came in and tried to explain to me why I was not allowed to respond to the councilor's argument about aesthetics and why I could not ask any questions of my own. (The Bureaucrat-splain) She said I was there to present the delegation information only. I told her that I had sent multiple emails to all members of City Council, as well as paper copies of documents, and I had never received a single reply. She seemed a bit perturbed by my response. She then said something about it "just being the rules," and I replied, "Sometimes the rules are not adequate."
I realized after returning to the meeting that she was a city councilor, so she had received the multiple emails from both me and my mother on the subject, as well as a paper document mailed to her, and had not responded.
Multiple city councillors seemed quite shocked to learn that opposition to 5G and cell towers is a well-established worldwide movement, and they did ask some pertinent questions to some of the other delegations involved. This was a more thoughtful response than many people have gotten from their City Councils on this issue, but it was still a highly problematic response.
Regina City Council is attempting to create a cell tower protocol for the entire city. One of the major issues is the number of metres a cell tower must be set back from residences, businesses, schools, hospitals, elderly carehomes, libraries, daycares, etc. This protocol would also determine "encouraged sites" versus "discouraged sites" for cell towers. The major problem with this is that there is no known safe distance from 5G-equipped cell towers. 5G radiation is untested for long-term exposures. There are zero scientific studies showing 5G radiation is safe for humans, animals, insects, or plants. Any "safe distance" would be a best guess from a council that has so far entirely underestimated the health and safety dangers of these towers and particularly of 5G cell tower densification.
SaskTel (the major telecommunications company in Saskatchewan) has already balked at a 500 metre set back for cell towers, and this would be the bare minimum distance that could be considered safer, not safe. Council is talking about a setback two or three times the height of each tower. This would amount to a setback of between 90 and 135 metres for 4G/5G towers. We already know that a 2004 study, The Influence of Being Physically Near to a Cell Phone Transmission Mast on the Incidence of Cancer, showed people were three times more likely to get cancer if they lived within 400 metres of a cell tower, and this is based on 2G or 3G towers. 5G towers produce much higher levels of radiation and many more pulsed frequencies than previous generations, so 90 to 135 meters is not even close to adequate for true safety.
In addition, 5G small cell installations can be very tiny. They can be affixed to street lights or to buildings, for example. These are not towers in the traditional sense. In this case, the guidelines for setbacks would be entirely inapplicable. There are already dozens of unsafe 4G cell towers in this city. Thousands of people already live, work, and go to school dangerously close to cell towers, and this will only increase with the planned 1,000+ 5G small cell installations for the city. Many of the current 4G towers have been placed directly near homes, businesses, and schools. My question is this: if a cell tower protocol is developed where towers must be 400 or 500 metres away from people, will this be retroactively applied to existing towers? As far as I'm aware, I will not be able to bring any further perspective to City Council on this issue. I'm now relegated to sending more emails or paper documents, which have so far been entirely unacknowledged. This doesn't deter me because I'm a tenacious son of a bitch, but this battle is far from easy. For us to make real headway, all those opposed to the 5G rollout and to cell tower densification must be active in their resistance in an ongoing way. Take heart! We're in the right. What follows is a written copy of the delegation I presented to Regina City Council on August 17, 2022.
Below is a link to a longer document I put on the record as supplemental information for my delegation. If I had been allowed to ask a question of the councillors, my question was going to be whether they had read the document I submitted! I guess I'll never know...
Supplemental document on 5G and cell tower dangers: Cell Tower and 5G Dangers - Please Oppose Residential Cell Tower Installations and the 5G Rollout in Your Community
My five-minute delegation: "I’m here today to speak against the plan for more cell towers to be erected in residential and business areas of Regina.
I’m an electromagnetically sensitive person and will, without a doubt, be harmed by additional cell towers in the city. Already, I can barely tolerate the levels of radiation in Regina, and I’m far from the only resident experiencing this.
I experience many debilitating symptoms from wireless devices and cell towers, including fatigue, headaches, dizziness, tingling in my hands and feet, heart palpitations, heaviness in my chest, insomnia, and pain.
I would suggest that a survey of people living around the already-existing cell towers in Regina would show similar symptoms.
Electromagnetic sensitivity is a condition that is on the rise worldwide, and we are simply the canaries in the coal mine. The electromagnetic radiation that harms us immediately will harm others over a longer timeline. We’ve known for decades now that people experience ill health when living and working around cell towers, but this knowledge is being ignored in the rush to roll out 5G (fifth generation) wireless technology worldwide.
There are more than 10,000 scientific studies and a mountain of anecdotal evidence showing health harm and biological effects from even low doses of non-ionizing radiation – doses lower than government and industry claim are safe. These adverse effects are seen in humans, animals, insects, and plants.
Some of the health damage documented in these studies includes altered heart rhythms; neurological and neuro-psychiatric problems like headaches, depression, fatigue, insomnia, dizziness, difficulty concentrating, and memory dysfunction; DNA damage; cell death; increased oxidative stress; increased incidence of cancer; disrupted calcium levels; and lowered fertility. A 2004 study titled ‘The Influence of Being Physically Near to a Cell Phone Transmission Mast on the Incidence of Cancer’ showed that people were three times more likely to get cancer if they lived within 400 metres of a cell tower. There are already thousands of Reginans living and working closer than 400 metres to a cell tower. Because 5G technology requires many more cell towers in closer proximity to people's homes and businesses, almost everyone on Earth would be living within 400 metres of a cell tower if the planned 5G rollout is allowed to continue. In 2004, the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) passed a resolution opposing the installation of cell towers on fire stations in the U.S. and Canada. This followed increasing complaints from fire fighters about adverse health effects. A 2004 brain study of California fire fighters exposed to cell tower radiation over the previous five years showed brain abnormalities, cognitive impairment, delayed reaction time, and lack of impulse control.
So why are cell towers now being placed near schools, daycares, libraries, churches, businesses, and residences?
The health effects experienced by the fire fighters in the early 2000s were occurring with 2G cell towers. 5G radiation is many times more intense than previous generations, exposing people to potentially hundreds of new pulsed frequencies in an intensity to which we have never before been exposed – up to 30 GHz with microwaves, and up to 300 GHz with millimetre waves. Councilor Bob Hawkins has been quoted in local media stating that the aesthetic ugliness of cell towers could be the only possible objection from the public. This is very far from the truth. Millions of people all over the world oppose 5G and are fighting to have cell towers removed or blocked from their neighbourhoods.
Tens of thousands of scientists and doctors worldwide have signed petitions calling for the halt of untested 5G technology, citing health and safety concerns.
The proposal to erect a cell tower, quite possibly 5G equipped, very near two elementary schools in Harbour Landing is particularly disturbing.
In 2019, after immense public pressure, parents of students at Weston Elementary School in Ripon, California finally won the right to remove a cell tower on the campus of that school only after tremendous health damage was done. From 2016 to 2019, four students and three teachers at the school were diagnosed with different forms of cancer. I do not wish to see a repeat of this scenario in Regina. Millions of people around the world oppose the rollout of dangerous 5G technology for other reasons, as well, which include the creation of 5G and 6G-driven “Smart Cities,” the Internet of Things; electronic monitoring, tracking, tracing, and surveillance, including facial recognition cameras; automation leading to the mass loss of jobs; and the use of artificial intelligence, including in police and military. 5G technology is untested for health and safety, especially for long term exposures. There are zero scientific studies showing that 5G radiation is safe, and this especially goes for millimetre waves. The Federal Government's safety standards, Safety Code 6, are terribly outdated and do not protect Canadians from non-ionizing radiation at all. Safety Code 6 was written decades ago, before wireless devices and cell towers were used widely in society, and covers only thermal radiation. In light of the known dangers, the new cell towers, including 5G-equipped towers, being proposed for Regina must be stopped, and continued densification of cell towers in the city must halt. Unsafe towers that are currently installed in Regina must be moved outside areas where people live, work, and go to school. Thank you."
Action and war planet Mars enters information and communication-related Gemini on August 20 for an extended transit that lasts until March 25, 2023. This will include a Mars retrograde period from October 30, 2022 to January 11, 2023 (25 degrees to 8 degrees Gemini). This is a seven-month period characterized by informational (Gemini) battling (Gemini) and informational warfare. As illustrated (a little ahead of schedule), we have to fight to get our information and perspectives across, especially within rigid bureaucracies, but the potency and influence of our messages are much stronger than usual, too. Mars-charged. The right information shared at the right time and in the right way can change the course of the proceedings in a beneficial or even life-saving way. It can change the course of history on this planet, period. Don't underestimate the power of your own voice, your own perspective, your own information, and your own influence on the people and society around you. Put your words into action in smart and necessary ways, and you will be satisfied with the results.
This is an unsafe EMF/RF meter reading taken around a cell tower in southwest Regina, Saskatchewan on August 19, 2022. The reading shows electromagnetic radiation that is 20 times higher than the lowest level at which biological effects are seen. This is just one of dozens of unsafe cell towers in the city. For the past year, EMF/RF meter readings have been taken regularly at multiple cell towers in the city. They all show unsafe levels of radiation in the surrounding areas.