San Francisco “Don’t Take the Bait” Campaign

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(KTSF by Jessie Liang)

Today, San Francisco Supervisor Malia Cohen joined the Department of the Environment, parents, pet advocates and business owners in calling for a voluntary ban of certain mouse and rat control products that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says pose an “unreasonable risk” to children, pets and wildlife.

The director of San Francisco Department of the Environment, Melanie Nutter says, “The campaign is to to educate consumers and ask merchants to voluntary discontinue the sale of mouse and rat baits that US EPA has determented unsafe but they are still on the market.”

The EPA made its determination of “unreasonable risk” in 2008, and initiated regulatory action to cancel and remove mouse and rat poisons. However, the manufacturers have not adopted the new more protective measures. Melanie Nutter says that can take years to complete.

According to the EPA, the products such as D-Con, Hot Shot and Rid-a-Rat are not complying with the EPA’s new safety measures. “Every year between 12 and 15 thousand children are exposed to toxic rat baits,” said Cohen.

Chris Geiger from San Francisco Department of the Environment says, ” They’re also very toxic for birds. And as a matter of fact in EPA documents, testing show that the toxicity to the birds is 100 times greater than the level required to call them very highly toxic.”

San Francisco Supervisor Malia Cohen plans to introduce a resolution to the Board Supervisors demanding that three manufacturers comply with the EPA and immediately stop the sale and manufacture of products that pose a hazard to the public. There are 10 San Francisco businesses including Walgreens with a combined 87 retail locations that have already joined the City’s campaign and pledged to remove these poisons from their shelves.

As an alternative to these hazardous baits, the Department of the Environment recommends that consumers seal holes in buildings to prevent entry by rodents, keep areas clean and free of food sources, and use old-fashioned snap traps.

(Copyright 2011 KTSF.  All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

 

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