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MAF must provide pesticide-filtering masks

Stop Aerial Spraying (SAS) calls for MAF to issue pesticide-filtering masks to people in the spray zone.

Spokesperson for Stop Aerial Spraying, Jane Schaverien, said today: “People who inhale Benzoic Acid, one of the recently revealed ingredients in the pesticide being sprayed on Auckland by MAF, may be subject to irreversible long term injury to their health.”

If the government insists on continuing the spraying the least they can do is the issue of pesticide filtering masks to all Aucklanders in the spray zone. The ingredients of the spray revealed on the Sunday TV programme, are not supposed to be inhaled.

Jane Schaverien said: “We are calling for the immediate issue of full protective clothing and most importantly pesticide-filtering masks to everyone in the zones sprayed, particularly children and babies, to prevent any further sensitisation of the population.”

Pesticide filtering masks can be purchased from hardware stores, but they, with the replacement filters needed, are quite expensive. Stop Aerial Spraying recommends that all in the spray and drift zones, including those in ‘hot spots’ who are sprayed weekly, take the precaution of wearing the masks during spraying and for at least 2 hours after it ceases. SAS calls on MAF to foot the bill and issue the masks without delay.

Ranui and Swanson were sprayed today and the whole area is being sprayed again on May 13th.

Stop Aerial Spraying considers that MAF may face a huge suit for damages from citizens down the track. People will be able to trace their sensitisation to food preservatives and cosmetics to repeated exposure to these chemicals during aerial spraying.

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