Friday, June 19, 2015

Cellphone $uit a Cancer on Free $peech

"Cellphone industry suit battles Calif. city over warning-label law" Associated Press  June 12, 2015

SAN FRANCISCO — A new Berkeley city ordinance that requires cellphone sellers to warn customers about radiation from the devices violates free speech rights, an industry trade group said in a new lawsuit.

CTIA-The Wireless Association said in the suit filed Monday in federal court that Berkeley would force sellers to convey a message that was inaccurate, misleading, controversial, and that they disagree with, the San Francisco Chronicle reported Thursday.

Berkeley officials said the warning language in the ordinance was taken directly from manufacturers’ statements and is more limited than a similar ordinance in San Francisco that was later dropped.

‘‘Berkeley’s measure is designed to avoid the legal snares that stopped San Francisco’s effort,’’ said Charles Burress, an assistant to Tom Bates, the mayor of Berkeley.

The city would require cellphone retailers to tell customers that they could be exposed to radio-frequency radiation at levels exceeding federal guidelines if they keep their cellphones in their pants, shirt pockets or bras while the devices are switched on and connected to a wireless network. 

I rarely carry mine.

San Francisco’s ordinance would have required hone retailers to tell consumers the phones could expose them to dangerous levels of radiation, classified as possibly cancer-causing by the World Health Organization, the Chronicle reported.

The city dropped the ordinance in 2013 after a federal appeals court barred its enforcement. The ordinance had also been challenged by the wireless association.

The group’s lawsuit against Berkeley charges that the city’s language falsely implies that the federal guidelines are safety limits. They are, in fact, set well below any danger levels, CTIA’s lawyers said.

What, government lied again?