March 26, 2022 – The health of Manitobans will be harmed if the provincial government proceeds with announced plans to weaken restrictions on non-essential uses of pesticides.
Bill 22 on the Government’s legislative agenda will amend Manitoba’s pesticide regulation to allow the use of currently banned pesticides on municipal and residential lawns. The planned amendments will also permit the unrestricted sale of these harmful pesticides at retail outlets.
At present, only the products on an allowable pesticides list can be used on lawns. The proposed loosening of restrictions would allow municipalities and lawn care companies to apply toxic pesticides to lawns, greatly expanding exposure of residents to these chemicals.
And individuals would be able to freely purchase currently banned pesticides for their own use, with no monitoring or control of such sales.
As noted on this web site, exposure to non-essential toxic pesticides puts human health, especially children’s health, at unnecessary risk.
Some municipalities contend that the more toxic products are needed because, they claim, the alternatives are ineffective and cost too much. But a study of Canadian cities with cosmetic pesticide bans, conducted by the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment in 2018, found that satisfactory and publicly accepted levels of weed control can be successfully achieved at reasonable cost without using the riskier herbicides.
PROTECT THE HEALTH OF YOU AND YOUR FAMILY
Email or phone your provincial representative (see below) to tell them you oppose Bill 22 and its roll-back of existing environmental protections. Remind them that people want to live in healthy communities where they and their children are not exposed to avoidable pesticide health risks. Peer-reviewed studies have established that toxic pesticides put human health at risk. And experience elsewhere shows they are not needed for weed control on residential lawns and municipal green spaces.
In addition, restricting non-essential uses of pesticides also helps to protect the health of pets, reduce risks for pollinating insects, reduce pesticide contamination of waterways, and preserve biodiversity. There is simply no need to change the existing non-essential pesticide use regulation that is helping to keep children healthy and our environment safe.
Concerned Manitobans also have a right to speak at Legislative Committee hearings to be held after the bill passes second reading. To register to present on Bill 22, call the Office of the Clerk 204-945-3636 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Also note, the public is still not allowed to enter the Legislature, so presentations will be virtual. Presentation guidelines are at: https://www.gov.mb.ca/legislature/committees/presentation_how_to.html
LET OTHERS KNOW
Three simple ways to spread the word about the Province’s plans to weaken Manitoba’s non-essential pesticide laws:
(1) Share the link to this web site – https://cosmeticpesticidebanmb.com/ – or to the backgrounder noted below.
(2) Download and share this (PDF) summary and backgrounder that describes what’s at stake with the proposed changes.
(3) Write a Letter to the Editor saying why you feel that the current restrictions on cosmetic pesticides should remain in place.
Bill 22 is now scheduled to come to a vote during the fall session of the Manitoba Legislature. Voice your concerns to help ensure that cosmetic pesticide restrictions are retained, so that families and communities are protected from unnecessary pesticide health risks.