• Author Deb Mayer

A Very Funny Parent Speaks Out on a Very Serious Topic

Are we all spending too much time looking at our screens? Comedian Paula Poundstone thinks technology addictions are an attack on family time and the developing brains of our kids.

SB 281, SB 282, and SB 283 are all sponsored by Senator Laurie Monnes Anderson and were filed in pre-session. The bills are related — all having to do with adverse health effects from wireless devices and wifi radiation. Oregon is not the only state to introduce such bills. Maryland, Massachusetts, and Michigan also have addressed the issue through legislation. That there could be a down side to the technology that has become so much a part of our lives is a topic most people would rather ignore. While the tech industry has used its considerable resources to convince the public that wireless devices like cellphones and laptops are safe, independent scientific research does not support that idea. At Wireless Education Network Dr. Martin Pall exhibits years of research that contradicts the tech industry's claims.

One parent who has studied the research and used her platform as a comedian to speak up on the issue is Paula Poundstone. From one parent to another, we should do the same.

Comedian Paula Poundstone visited Maryland to help push for a bill that would create medical guidelines for the safe use of digital devices in school classrooms. Poundstone was joined by a Maryland mother, Cindy Eckert, and a group that gathered at Rams Head On Stage in Annapolis. Poundstone expressed why putting restrictions on how much screen time kids get in school is so important and personal to her and her family. She said her son has had issues with screen addiction. Maryland was successful in passing the first screen time bill in the nation in 2018.

If you have a story to tell about how technology has affected you family life, share it with us in comments below. You may also join our Parents Across America for Safe Technology FB group.

For the full text of each Oregon bill, click on the bill title.

SB 281. Relating to radiation-emitting wireless digital products; declaring an emergency.

Requires manufacturer of digital product to label product with information relating to health risks associated with use of product. Authorizes Oregon Health Authority to adopt rules related to labeling of digital products. Declares emergency, effective on passage.

SB 282. Relating to use of electronic devices in classrooms; declaring an emergency.

Requires Department of Education, in cooperation with Oregon Health Authority, to conduct study to determine and recommend appropriate health standards to govern student use of computers, mobile digital devices and other electronic media in classrooms.

Requires department by rule to adopt guidelines for limiting student use of computers, mobile digital devices and other electronic media in classrooms in accordance with health and safety guidelines department develops, allowing parent to give or deny consent for parent's child to participate in curricula that involve extensive work with computers, mobile digital devices or electronic media and offering parent alternative curricula that involve less exposure to computers, mobile digital devices or electronic media. Declares emergency, effective on passage.

SB 283. Relating to exposure to radiation in schools in this state; declaring an emergency.

Directs Department of Education to prepare and make available statement that discloses potential health risks of wireless network technology and requires public and private schools to distribute statement to employees, students and parents or guardians of students. Requires department to adopt by rule guidelines for including in school curricula, assemblies, open houses, meetings between parents and teachers and related settings information concerning hazards of exposure to microwave radiation and how to use wireless devices more safely to reduce risk. Requires department and Oregon Health Authority to conduct review of peer-reviewed, independently funded studies of effects of exposure to microwave radiation in schools and similar environments, particularly exposure that results from use of wireless network technologies, to develop recommendations to schools in this state for practices and alternative technologies that would eliminate students' exposure to harmful microwave radiation and report results of review and recommendations to interim committee of Legislative Assembly related to education not later than September 15, 2020. Declares emergency, effective on passage.

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