Many people consider having Wi-Fi access in public places to be a convenience, but one Massachusetts couple considers it a major health risk for their son and have filed a lawsuit against his school. The parents claim that their son suffers from a very controversial condition called Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity Syndrome (EHS) which has presented itself after his school switched on Wi-Fi.
ABC News reports about the lawsuit being filed against the Fay School in Southborough and the highly debated syndrome that some in the medical community do not believe exists. According to the parents (who were unnamed in the lawsuit to protect their identity), their son began displaying symptoms of EHS after their school began using Wi-Fi. The parents explain their son’s symptoms in court papers saying, “The high-density Wi-Fi used in the Fay classrooms is causing G to suffer headaches, chest pains, nosebleeds, nausea, dizziness, and rashes, all recognized symptoms of EHS.”
The parents of the boy are asking that the school opt for Ethernet or switch back to an old Wi-Fi network the school used to use that the parents believe did not cause symptoms for their son. They are also asking for $250,000 in damages from the school. The child’s doctor, Dr. Jeanne Hubbuch, has also urged the school to comply with their parents’ wishes. Dr. Hubbuch writes in court papers, “The complete extent of these effects on people is still unknown. But it is clear that children and pregnant women are at the highest risk. This is due to the brain tissue being more absorbent, their skulls are thinner and their relative size is small. There are no studies that show that exposure to these two vulnerable groups is safe.”
Though the World Health Organization (WHO) recognizes the syndrome, they contend that is has not been proven to be caused by electromagnetic exposure and there is no criteria for symptoms. WHO officials explain their take on the syndrome saying, “It has been suggested that symptoms experienced by some EHS individuals might arise from environmental factors unrelated to EMF [electromagnetic fields]. Examples may include 'flicker' from fluorescent lights, glare and other visual problems with [visual display units], and poor ergonomic design of computer workstations. Other factors that may play a role include poor indoor air quality or stress in the workplace or living environment.”
What do you think of these parents’ claims that Wi-Fi in their son’s school is causing him to show symptoms of EHS?
Do you think the school should comply with the parents’ wishes?