For the first time a coalition of national and European NGOs have taken the initiative to bring together the voices of the victims of pesticide poisoning by launching today - the first day of the 10th Pesticide Action Week - a new website dedicated to telling their stories.
Pesticides are found everywhere: food, drinking water, in the air, in the soil and even in our blood… Bees are disappearing at an alarming rate. Pesticides destroy the balance of biodiversity. Diseases related to pesticide exposure are multiplying.
Worldwide, citizens are more and more concerned about the impact of pesticides on their health and the environment. We are regularly contacted by citizens of diverse backgrounds expressing their concern about pesticide use in towns: parents worried about pesticides use in the playgrounds, schools, sports fields, public gardens, dog owners worried about pesticides sprayed on the sidewalk, local tourist guides concerned about spraying of historical monuments etc
It is not just in towns that people are raising concerns about pesticide use. Everybody living in the countryside close to agricultural areas is highly likely to be exposed to a toxic mixture of pesticides year after year.
Farmers and agricultural workers also contact us on a regular basis, concerned about the pesticides that they have to use or that they come into contact with during the course of their work.
But these stories have up until now gone largely unheard, ignored and those telling them have been left to feel isolated and alone. With the aim to change this and give a voice to the victims of pesticides PAN Europe launched the voices of pesticides website so that these people need to be silent no more. Join us on www.voicesofpesticides.info
We are encouraging people to share their stories so that the world knows. We want the victims to be heard and we want to use those stories to assist us in stopping or at least reducing, the use of pesticides in all areas.
"Générations Futures has been working with farmers victims of pesticides in France for years now, trying to make them visible. We are so glad today that other PAN Europe, other PAN colleagues and HEAL join to give victims of pesticides from all over Europe the visibility they deserve. Now European policymakers will never be able to say that pesticides are safe to use any more!" François Veillerette président of PAN Europe and spokesman of Generation Future.
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For further information please contact:
Henriette Christensen, PAN Europe, tel: +32 473 37 56 71, henriette [at] pan-europe.info
Francois Veillerette, PAN Europe, + 33 681 64 65 58, mdrgf [at] wanadoo.fr