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Letter to the Editor: Pesticides and the elderly

By MARY ANDERSON
St. Paul, Minn.

Editor,

I recently researched housing for my parents, both 88 years old, and discovered pesticides are used inside apartment buildings. They spray the halls, and elsewhere, with pesticides. I know pesticides are used inside nursing homes, and other senior citizen facilities, which is why I am trying very hard to avoid my parents living in these types of places. I am aghast that these poisons are used around anyone, especially the elderly.

Our family discovered the hard way that pesticides are poisonous to people�we used them, and were poisoned by them. We then discovered being poisoned by pesticides made us sensitive or allergic to cleaning compounds, disinfectants, and other everyday products; the Environmental Protection Agency classifies disinfectants and sanitizers as pesticides, which make them extra toxic to people.

Using these poisons around the elderly is a total travesty. The elderly need extra care, and exposing them to poisons is unconscionable. Pesticides hurt people, and they should absolutely not be allowed around our most vulnerable--the elderly, children, and people with health problems. Actually, healthy people should not be exposed to them either. I was healthy once until we used pesticides.

I pray you will understand, and take action in whatever way you can to stop this practice.





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