Peterborough Health Unit Shows it has mastered Orwell’s lessons – takes down TCE website

MEDIA RELEASE

Homeowners and residents exposed to Lethal Pollution (TCE HELP)

Toronto environmental lawyers agree to attend TCE meeting on July 24th to discuss possible law suit

PETERBOROUGH, July 22, 2012 -  Peterborough County-City Health Unit (PCCHU) has shown it has mastered Orwell’s lessons as outlined in his famous book, 1984 and his various essays.

Last week, on July 16, it dismantled its web site on Trichloroethylene (TCE).  The web site had previously included presentations made at a public meeting on June 26, 2012 by PCCHU’s Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Rosana Pellizzari, and staff from the Ministry of the Environment.  It appears the PCCHU TCE information was removed shortly after promotional information was sent out to Peterboroughmedia on July 16th regarding a follow-up public meeting on TCE scheduled for July 24th . To download the PDF booklet with information on this meeting, please click here.

Toronto environmental lawyers agree to attend TCE meeting

David McRobert, a local environmental lawyer who has been working with local residents on the TCE also announced this morning that two lawyers from the Toronto-based law firm, Iler Campbell, have agreed to attend the public meeting on TCE scheduled for July 24th.  Paula Boutis and Laura Bowman, lawyers with considerable experience in environmental litigation, will discuss options for proceeding with a class action law suit and other private actions such as small claims.  This will take place in an in-camera (or private) portion of the meeting.

http://www.ilercampbell.com/

http://www.ilercampbell.com/ic_pboutis.php

http://www.ilercampbell.com/ic_lbowman.php

Additional Background on Disappearing PCCHU TCE Site

As of July 21 2012, the only document that appeared to be available to the public on the PCCHU site was a fact sheet on TCE.

http://www.pcchu.ca/HH/HH-Trichloroethylene.html

David McRobert, a local environmental lawyer who has been working with local residents said he was “shocked and appalled by the lack of transparency and accountability.”  He intends to contact the Chief Medical officer of Health for the province and the Ontario Ombudsman of Ontario and ask for full investigations and reports on the action.

“These actions appear contrary to the mandate of the PCCHU”, McRobert says.  Even so, he expects that many folks like himself have made electronic copies of the key materials and “intends to make them available to any residents and media who request copies.”

He notes that under the new provisions related to the “Fair Dealing” and copyright under the new federal Copyright Act, the PCCHU and MOE materials can be shared without permission for educational purposes.  In addition, a series of recent Supreme Court of Canada rulings has signaled a more liberal approach to Fair Dealing.

McRobert also was interested to note that the previously-approved April 11 minutes for the Board of Health meeting on the PCCHU also were inaccessible to him and unavailable to the public.

Health Canada on TCE

http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/ewh-semt/pubs/contaminants/psl1-lsp1/trichloroethylene/trichloroethylene_2-eng.php

For further information:

David McRobert
mcrobert@sympatico.ca
T. 416 487 4677; Cell: 647 234 4677

Rosana Pellizzari,MD, CCFP, MSC, FRCPC, Medical Officer of Health, Peterborough County-City Health Unit

rpellizzari@pcchu.ca

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