First Time in BC: All-party support for provincial pesticide ban
04 April 2012
Groups launch by-election education drive to prohibit toxic lawn products
Embargoed until April 4, 2012 (Vancouver, BC): A majority of Metro Vancouver voters of all political stripes endorse a province-wide ban on the sale and use of lawn and garden pesticides, according to a poll released today. The survey, which polled residents in the Port Moody-Coquitlam by-election area, demonstrates statistically-equivalent support for a ban – 71, 70 and 69 per cent, respectively – among NDP, Liberal and Conservative-leaning voters.
It’s believed to be the first time in British Columbia that the legislation has enjoyed such a high level of endorsement from supporters of all three parties.
The poll results coincide with the announcement that a network of BC environmental and health organizations has launched a non-partisan voter education project to make pesticides a campaign issue in the Port Moody-Coquitlam by-election.
“The people of Port Moody-Coquitlam can help put pesticides on the government’s radar not just in this one riding but across the province,” said Kathryn Seely, Director of Public Issues for the Canadian Cancer Society, BC and Yukon. “We’ll be reaching out to citizens in this by-election so they can urge candidates to make a strong pesticide ban a government priority, no matter who gets elected.”
A BC government committee will soon release recommendations regarding restrictions on non-essential pesticides use province-wide. Ontario already has such a law. At issue is how strong the recommendations will be and whether effective legislation will result.
BC environmental groups – Greenpeace, Sierra Club BC and Wildsight – are partnering on the voter education with the Canadian Cancer Society and the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment (CAPE). The project includes a website – IVote4SafeLawns.ca – which helps voters send a pesticide ban message to all candidates.
“The poll shows nearly two-thirds of Vancouverites know pesticides are linked to childhood cancer,” said CAPE Executive Director Gideon Forman. “Among people with kids, support for a pesticide ban is at 76 per cent,” said Forman. “Candidates who endorse a strong provincial pesticide ban will be very popular with families.”
To view the poll visit: IVote4SafeLawns.ca
For more information contact:
Kathryn Seely, Director of Public Issues, Canadian Cancer Society-BC and Yukon, (604) 675-7108; (604) 999-4659 (cell)
Gideon Forman, Executive Director, Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment, (416) 306-2273; (647) 703-5957 (cell)
The Canadian Cancer Society is a national community-based organization of volunteers whose mission is the eradication of cancer and the enhancement of the quality of life of people living with cancer. When you want to know more about cancer, visit our website www.cancer.ca or call our toll-free, bilingual Cancer Information Service at 1 888 939-3333.