The Cosmetic Pesticide Ban Should be Maintained

Child Grass

A cosmetic pesticide ban will protect our most vulnerable family members.


Our brief to the provincial government, in response to the cosmetic pesticide consultation.

List of organizations supporting the ban is included.


Media contact:
Neil Bailey @ 204-979-6345.


Take Action: Cosmetic Pesticide Consultation 2016

lawns.JPGOur provincial government is currently soliciting input on the cosmetic pesticide ban that was implemented in Manitoba in 2014. We encourage those who support the ban to respond to the consultation before the deadline of September 12.

We have prepared responses to the consultation questions below, which you are free to use in preparing your own response.


We have also prepared a one-page statement of support for maintaining the current pesticide regulation. If you prefer, you can download and submit this document to

Document: CosmeticPesticideBanOnePage

Manitoba’s Cosmetic Pesticide Ban is a sensible, low-cost public health measure, and protects the most vulnerable members of our communities. It should stay in place.

Want to know who supports the ban on cosmetic pesticides?

Further reading:

This post from Green Action Centre gives a good outline of how the pesticide ban came to be in the first place.

Think that beauty can be more than just a lawn? You might be interested in this article, also from Green Action Centre.

Green Action Centre: perspectives on beauty


As a welcome addition to the dialogue on beautiful green spaces and how they are created and maintained, Green Action Centre offers some reflection on what ‘beautiful’ is, and how it comes to be.

A worthwhile read!


CAPE Report shines light on Canadian pesticide practices

Twitter Pesticide Rpt Meme - Girl with Dandelion - Impact
The Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment (CAPE) released a report yesterday providing a detailed overview and critique of pesticide use in Canada. The report outlines various government responsibilities concerning pesticide regulations, brings together information on provincial best practices across Canada, and makes suggestions for how those best practices in pest management could be improved.

Please read and share!

Link to the report:

A backgrounder to the report:

Provincial Consultation on Cosmetic Pesticides – Your input is needed!


The provincial government has re-opened debate on the cosmetic pesticide ban. Please follow the Cosmetic Pesticide Ban Working Group Facebook page for updates, and let the government know that you support the ban. Comments can be sent to until Sept.12.

For more information, see this recent letter from CAPE, this article on the problems with Roundup/glyphosate, or Peter Denton’s impassioned plea for policy based on sound science.

Regarding our habitual over-reliance on pesticides, it is also worth noting that Health Canada reminded us this spring that your lawn doesn’t need pesticides, and the City of Winnipeg found that 50% of Winnipeg’s mosquito population is due to standing water on private property. We need not jump so quickly to spraying toxic chemicals, when a little care and proper maintenance would do the job.

Cosmetic Pesticide Ban Announced for Manitoba!

pesticide ban announcementManitoba’s NDP government announced on Friday, June 28th, that a cosmetic pesticide ban will be introduced in the fall session, to come into effect at the end of 2014 with a one year grace period.  The proposed ban will include lawns, driveways, sidewalks, patios, school grounds, playing fields and playgrounds.

Of course we are very happy that the Provincial Government has proposed a ban, many of our coalition members and other Manitobans have been working on this for many years.  Our work is not over, however, until legislation is passed and comes into effect.  Industry is sure to be putting the pressure on the Government to delay or reduce the ban’s effectiveness.

pesticide ban announcement 2It is still important to call Gord Mackintosh (204-945-3730) or your MLA to let them know that you support a cosmetic pesticide ban, and to thank them for planning to introduce the ban .  There will also be consultations in the fall so we will be attending those and we ask that you will as well.  Watch our website and Facebook page for more information and dates and times.

Thanks for your continued support!


Spring Update

Greetings, my name is Leah Goertzen and I am the new pesticide campaign coordinator for Cosmetic Pesticide Ban Manitoba. I am a University of Manitoba graduate student specializing in community based health initiatives facilitated by participatory action research. I support the cosmetic pesticide ban because scientific evidence reveals a ban will substantially reduce human and environmental exposure to unnecessary toxins.

I have joined the Cosmetic Pesticide Ban Manitoba (CPBM) coalition during a critical time in the campaign. Pesticide season is upon us yet there is no confirmed government action to ban these toxins. Recent polls indicate 71% of Manitobans support the ban yet there are signs that the government is wavering on the issue. As a coalition of concerned citizens, we need to act now by contacting our MLAs to confirm citizen support for this ban. Please visit the CPBM website to learn how you can affect change now.

Cosmetic Pesticide Ban Manitoba Meet and Greet

CPBMB would like to thank all the supporters who came out to our Meet and Greet on April 2. We had a great turn out and were happy with all the networking and exchanging of ideas that happened.  We were able to raise enough money to pay for the appetizers and give some money to Canadian Physicians for the Environment to help pay for the Oracle Poll they initiated.Image

Momentum is still going strong and we are hiring for a Cosmetic Pesticide Educator to continue on with the work and campaigning that needs to happen to create awareness about this important issue.

Our meeting with Gord Mackintosh went well, we still don’t have an update but we learned that Minister Mackintosh is doing a lot of research and work around the issue of cosmetic pesticides and is open to what Manitobans have to say about it.  He indicated that the NDP members of caucus will have input in the development of the legislation or regulation development, which means it is more important than ever to contact your MLA.

For those who questioned the validity of the CAPE poll, the WFP commissioned their own poll which yielded similar results.  Manitoba is ready for a Cosmetic Pesticide Ban, and they deserve one.

If you would like more information please contact

New poll shows 71% of Manitobans want lawn pesticides gone.

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.


For more information, contact:

Farrah Khan, Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment (CAPE)

(w) 416-306-2273 (c) 647-886-2189

Josh Brandon, Green Action Centre and Cosmetic Pesticide Ban Manitoba

(w) (204) 898-6460(c) 204-898-6460

Precaution on cosmetic pesticides calls for ban

Winnipeg Free Press – PRINT EDITION

By: Debbie Pollock

Posted: 1:00 AM | Comments: 0g

Eco-friendly products can substitute for cosmetic pesticides.


DARREN STONE / TIMES COLONIST Archives Eco-friendly products can substitute for cosmetic pesticides.

As a medical doctor, I feel a responsibility not only to improve the health of my individual patients but to help protect the health of our community by protecting the larger environment. As the mother of an eight-year-old boy, I feel that it is important to protect my son from unnecessary exposure to toxic lawn and garden pesticides in the environment.

Six provinces — Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland and Labrador — and 160 municipalities have already implemented a cosmetic pesticide ban. The Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment has led an extremely successful anti-pesticide campaign across Canada in recent years.

Now, Manitobans, have the opportunity to support a ban on cosmetic lawn and garden pesticides in our province. The Manitoba government has released a discussion paper regarding a potential ban on non-essential pesticides entitled Play it Safe: A Consultation on Cosmetic Lawn Pesticides. The deadline for public consultation is Oct. 1.

Why should we ban cosmetic pesticide use in Manitoba?

Pesticides are toxic chemicals that harm human health and the environment. Pesticides are among the most widely used chemicals in the world and also among the most dangerous to human health. Pesticides for lawn and garden care are a broad range of chemicals that include: herbicides, insecticides and fungicides. They are a leading cause of poisonings here in Canada and have been estimated to account for thousands of deaths each year globally.

The pesticide literature review released by the Ontario College of Family Physicians in 2012, showed “consistent associations between reproductive, respiratory and neurological problems in humans and pesticide exposure.” Also, the current body of knowledge suggests a connection between pesticides and cancer.

Cosmetic pesticide use is a public health issue, particularly for children. It is well established that children are at a greater risk from pesticide exposure than adults. Children represent a vulnerable and sensitive group because their bodies and physiological systems are still undergoing substantial growth and development. In addition, children are often more exposed to environmental health risks because of their particular behaviours and activity at each developmental stage.

Since non-essential cosmetic pesticides have the potential to cause harm and have no health benefits, it is prudent to take a precautionary approach. The precautionary principle states that when an activity poses a threat to human health or the environment, precautionary measures should be taken even when the cause and effect relationship is not fully established scientifically.

It is unnecessary to use potentially harmful chemicals to maintain beautiful properties. There are safe, natural alternatives and many non-toxic products on the market. Organic lawn care products and practices such as aeration, over seeding and mowing high can help produce healthy green lawns without the use of pesticides.

In 1948, the World Health Organization defined health as “a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being.” Since then, we have come to a better understanding of the place of humans within the global ecosystem. Today, health is a state of complete physical, mental, social and ecological well-being. Ultimately, our health depends upon the health of the ecosystem of which we are a part.

In a world of multiple chemical exposures, we must remove needless risks from cosmetic pesticides. We must protect our health and that of our children and future generations by protecting the health of our planet.

Manitobans deserve the protection from pesticides already enjoyed by millions of other Canadians. I would strongly encourage the public to send a letter to Conservation Minister Gord Mackintosh and Health Minister Theresa Oswald asking for a pesticide ban in Manitoba.


Winnipegger Debbie Pollock is member of the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment, whose mandate is to protect human health by protecting the planet.