January 22, 2014

People aren’t thinking about their lawns right now but it is important that the government know the majority of Manitobans support a ban on toxic lawn chemicals. Please write or call Minister of Conservation and Water Stewardship Gord Mackintosh, to let him know you want to see this legislation passed this spring. His number is (204)-945-3730 and his email address is: minconws@leg.gov.mb.ca. Click here to send your pesticide-ban email now! (link will open up your email with a quick message already included!). The email will also be sent to Health Minister Erin Selby (204-945-3731, minhlt@leg.gov.mb.ca), PC Leader Brian Pallister (204-945-3593, brian.pallister@leg.gov.mb.ca) and the NDP Caucus (204-945-3710, info@todaysndp.ca).

Watch for more action to come once Spring….well springs!

October 2, 2013

Action Alert: Let Minister Mackintosh know lawn pesticide legisilation should be a priority this fall!

Last summer, the Government of Manitoba promised legislation this fall that would protect Manitoba from synthetic chemical lawn pesticides. This promise is now at risk because of delays during the last legislative session.

Help make sure this legislation doesn’t fall to the way side! The safety of our children and our pets must be a priority. Pesticide legislation must be included in the Government’s November Throne Speech and introduced during the Fall Session to effectively protect our children, our pets and the environment.

Please write or call Minister of Conservation and Water Stewardship Gord Mackintosh, to let him know you want to see this legislation passed this fall.  His number is (204)-945-3730 and his email address is: minconws@leg.gov.mb.ca. Click here to send your pesticide-ban email now!Click here to send your pesticide-ban email now! (link will open up your email with a quick message already included!). Email will also be sent to PC Leader Brian Pallister and the NDP Caucus.

You can also write a letter to the editor of the Winnipeg Free Press and let them know you appreciate balanced journalism and would like to see what the opposite side has to say on the issue. Need some quick background information? Check out EcoJustice’s myth buster on cosmetic pesticide bans.

If we keep up the pressure we will win this ban and join the other 6 Provinces that have some form of protection from cosmetic pesticide use.

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February 26, 2013

71% of Manitobans want lawn pesticides gone

Rural and urban voters support ban; say pesticides threaten lakes

For Immediate Release – February 26, 2013

(Winnipeg, MB) Polling results released today indicate a large majority of Manitobans – 71% – support a law that would phase-out the use and sale of lawn and garden pesticides across the province. The survey shows broad support with rural, urban, and suburban residents agreeing at 86%, 72%, and 68% respectively, that cosmetic pesticides should be barred from use and sale. This is the first scientific poll on pesticides since the issue came up for debate last year.

“It’s clear Manitobans want and deserve the same protection from these unnecessary toxins as the millions of Canadians across Canada where provincial bans are already in place,” said Farrah Khan, a campaigner with the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment. Lawn and garden pesticides are already banned in six provinces from Ontario to Newfoundland. “Strong provincial legislation will take these poisons off store shelves and protect our most vulnerable population – our kids – from getting sick.”

This confirmation of public support is welcome news for the coalition known as Cosmetic Pesticide Ban Manitoba, who together with more than 25 local and national health and environment groups have called for a provincial ban on lawn and garden pesticides.

According to Winnipeg-based emergency physician, Dr. Paul Doucet, “peer-reviewed science consistently shows links between pesticide exposure and childhood cancer, birth defects, neurological problems, respiratory illness, and more. When non-toxic options are readily available, we should not put our health at risk simply for the appearance of a lawn.”

The new poll also reveals 77% of Manitobans see pesticides as a threat to the environment, including wildlife, air quality, and lakes; and 71% see lawn pesticides as a health threat to pets.

Earlier this month, Lake Winnipeg was named the world’s most threatened lake for 2013. Reducing toxic run-off is essential to protecting this and other water bodies across the province. Josh Brandon, communications coordinator at the Green Action Centre explains, “It’s no secret lawn pesticides are polluting our ecosystems. We hope the government will take action now to protect our lakes – while we still can.”

The polling was conducted by Oraclepoll Research. It involved a telephone survey of 498 Manitoba residents. The margin of error is +/- 4.4% 19/20 times.

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For more information, contact:

Gideon Forman, Executive Director – Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment (CAPE)

(w) 416-306-2273

Amanda Kinden, Green Action Centre and Cosmetic Pesticide Ban Manitoba

(w) (204) 925-3779

There was also a poll released February 18, 2013 that shows similar results.  It was commissioned by the Canadian Cancer Society and it polled British Columbians regarding their views of cosmetic pesticides.  Read about it here.

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About this group:

Cosmetic Pesticide Ban Manitoba is comprised of concerned citizens from a variety of groups who wish to create awareness and provide information about the important issue of a cosmetic pesticide ban in Manitoba.

The Provincial Government has entered into public consultations regarding a potential cosmetic pesticide ban in Manitoba.  This is the Play It Safe document which outlines why a cosmetic pesticide ban is being considered, which other provinces have a cosmetic pesticide ban, and what a cosmetic pesticide ban would entail.

The consultation period is now closed but you can still send Conservation Minister Gord Mackintosh your comments at minconws@leg.gov.mb.ca or by calling 204-945-3730.  Watch for the legislation to be introduced in the fall and for public consultations to possibly happen in November, 2013.

We are calling for the complete ban on the sale and use of cosmetic pesticides (the use of chemicals to maintain the appearance of a landscape (eg. lawns and gardens) NOT to address a health issue or invasive species.

There are many natural alternatives to dealing with weeds in lawns and gardens, but the best defence against weeds is to nurture the soil and make sure the conditions for growing are ideal.  There are many resources available at your local library or online, and Manitoba Eco-Network has an Organic Lawn Care Educational Program that delivers free organic lawn care workshops and there is a library to borrow some tools and books for free.

Please contact us at: cosmeticpesticidebanmb@gmail.com
and join our Facebook group.

For a little humour, check out our video!