Church should post details of its research findings on cell towers

Dear CBRA Board,

For your records this is a copy of my letter to the Cadboro Bay United Church.

Gary Henkelmann

Dear Cadboro Bay United Church,

I am very disappointed that your congregation has voted in favour of locating a cell phone tower in the middle of our community. I recently purchased a house less than 100 metres from your church and proposed tower and wish I had done more research on the Cadboro Bay United Church’s aspirations for the community.

Although the science world is divided on the issue a lot of research shows that there are extreme health care risks from close exposure to the radiation caused by cell phone towers. Recently (July 17, 2013) the Cadboro Bay United Church posted ‘Cell Phone Tower Information’ on their web site ( It says that the Cadboro Bay United Church Council, and I presume the congregation, “has been studying international scientific publications and research on the issue of electro-magnetic radiation and the effects on society at large”. I would appreciate reading the conclusions the Church and congregation have come up with and presume this will soon be posted. 

To assist with your research allow me to point out that in Vancouver the School Board has a policy, for good reason, restricting cell masts from within 300 metres of an existing school, while last month the Campbell River City Council turned down Telus’ request to erect a cell phone tower in a residential community. They concluded that putting a tower in a residential neighbourhood subjects the local citizens to a no-choice situation on electro-magnetic radiation beaming into their houses.

The on-line memo says, “no, we are only getting information from Telus” but the intent is very clear and the memo seems to only fill in the timeline. The only concern for the Church appears to be how they will hide the cell phone tower in the church’s bell tower, which I assume Telus will build. The memo says “no agreement exists between Telus and the Church” but goes on to say “we have technical approval from the various governing bodies and now it comes down to how it might be integrated into the building profile”. The memo carefully points out that the congregation was just voting in favour of an “information session” and that a majority were in favour. With a congregation of close to 500 people how many people actually attended that meeting and furthermore, how many of these people actually live in the community of Cadboro Bay? Or do they live elsewhere and feel justified in having a cell phone tower within a few metres of other people’s houses?

Even if the Cadboro Bay United Church is experiencing financial distress I find it morally repugnant that the congregation feels it is within their right to locate a cell phone tower in the middle of the community and their own daycare! The Vancouver School Board policy exists because the younger the person the more vulnerable they are to radiation. Would you send your child to a daycare if it is possible they could become more susceptible to auto-immune or other diseases?

Who will monitor and check these children 10 or 20 years down the road? Telus?

I hope that the Cadboro Bay United Church will re-consider its deal with Telus and that both the Church and Telus will become more community-conscious corporations.

I wonder if the CBRA and Board will take a position on this matter.

Yours truly,

Gary Henkelmann

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