State Registries and Neighbor Notification Laws

Louisiana's Voluntary Registry Program

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Reverse 911 System Used For Pre-Notification of Pesticide Spraying

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Your Neighbors - Unwilling Victims of Pesticide Misuse

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Registries Do Not Reach Most People

In states with registry programs, few people are aware of their existence or understand the process of signing up. In some states, proof of illness is required as well, raising the bar still higher. It takes a high level of awareness and motivation to navigate these hurdles and sign up for a registry, but universal notification is necessary to prevent precisely those exposures that generate this kind of awareness.

For many people, their first encounter with the hazards of pesticides comes from their accidental exposure from use on a neighboring property, such as families in yards and living rooms directly hit by drift. As these families repeatedly point out, they had no idea that their neighbors even used pesticides until after they had been injured by them. A registry is too late for them. Had they been told of an impending application on their neighbors' property, they could have prevented the injury in the first place.

The most pointed demonstration of the ineffectiveness of registries is the fact that a voluntary one already exists in Louisiana, but nobody knows about it! Preventing injury and exposure for everyone, not just the few who happen to hear of a voluntary registry, should be a public priority. However.....

Voluntary Registries Do Not Have
The Force Of Law

An industry-run, voluntary registry, such as in Louisiana, does not have the force of law behind it. A formally adopted pesticide neighbor notification law does. This means that if applicators fail to provide the promised notice under the voluntary approach, a neighbor has no recourse to demand it. A voluntary registry, therefore, does not provide a real right-to-know. The applicator industry, which claims that notice is too onerous to provide, holds all the cards.....deciding when, where, and if, a resident gets the requested notice, and leaving no options to neighbors if notice is not provided, which is often the case in Louisiana..

Other Public Health Laws Do Not Require The Hurdle Of A Registry

Other laws designed to inform people of potential toxic exposures do not require that they sign up to be informed about basic health hazards. Water quality violations, for example, are mailed home with water bills; general air pollution alerts are read on the nightly news. Toxic chemical pesticides pose potential hazards that warrant precautions, as a glance at any pesticide product label readily confirms. Warning should be provided to everyone, as a matter of course, in order to prevent possible harm.

Did you know...

Tri-Bullet Louisiana state agencies charged with protecting public health and the environment say they will be more active in notifying people of nearby contamination that may affect them. Governor's Environmental Contamination Notification Order

Tri-Bullet State Agriculture Commissioner Bob Odom said he doesn't have any problem with the executive order. "We think we do have a notification system," he said. For example, people who want to know when aerial pesticide spraying will be conducted can ask for such notice. Foster order on pollution stirs activity

Tri-Bullet Advanced notification of a pesticide application is considered by LDAF to be a "courtesy" from the applicator. There is no penalty for non-compliance by LDAF or LDHH, however, if you are disabled, you might be covered under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Find out about the ADA and Legal Issues.
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