San Francisco Can No Longer Warn Cell Phone Customers About Radiation Hazards
May 9, 2013 11:26 AM
The city Board of Supervisors voted in favor of a settlement on Tuesday
The city of San Francisco has lost the right to
place warnings about cell phone radiation
levels in its retail stores.
San Francisco was the first U.S. city to pass an ordinance that required retailers to warn consumers about cell phone radiation before they made the purchase. However, the city lost a court battle with the Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association (CTIA) -- which is comprised of companies like AT&T, Verizon, Samsung and Apple -- and will now lift the ordinance from city retailers.
The city Board of Supervisors voted in favor of a settlement on Tuesday, where San Francisco agrees to drop the ordinance. In exchange, the CTIA will waive its claims for attorney fees that would have amounted to about $500,000.
"I am for pushing the envelope on something as important as this, but I think the legal reality is such that if we do not approve this settlement, we're talking about having to pay half a million in legal fees," Supervisor David Campos said. "It's a very tough situation, but the last thing I want is to have the general fund give half a million dollars to lawyers in this case."
The ordinance went into effect in 2011, where retailers had to tell customers that gadgets like cell phones emit potentially cancer-causing radiation. The city even wanted to post that the World Health Organization (WHO) deemed cell phones
but a judge blocked this part of the ordinance, since WHO said more research was needed to back that claim.
The CTIA filed a lawsuit against the city, saying that the ordinance violated the industry's First Amendment rights.
A ruling in the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals last year said that San Francisco had to prove that scientists agreed with its claims about cell phone radiation. It also had to prove that the FCC no longer believed they were safe for consumers to use.
San Francisco decided to take a settlement offer in the end with the CTIA.
"I modded down, down, down, and the flames went higher." -- Sven Olsen
WHO Labels Cell Phone Radiation as a Possible Carcinogenic Hazard
May 31, 2011, 7:03 PM
San Francisco is First U.S. City to Pass Cell Phone Radiation Law
June 17, 2010, 7:00 AM
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