Orthodox poisoning their families

Thursday, November 09, 2006 |  by Staff Writer
Jerusalem’s planned Gay Pride Parade is approaching and ultra-Orthodox violent protests are heating up. What the ultra-Orthodox don’t realize is that through setting garbage bins ablaze, they’re actually poisoning themselves and their families.

Health officials have said that in burning plastic they’ve released thousands of dangerous chemicals into the air.

These chemicals include cyanide and a variety of volatile organochlorine compounds, toxic substances released into the air when plastic is torched, said Prof. Elihu Richter, retiring head of the Unit of Occupational and Environmental Medicine at the Hebrew University's Braun School of Public Health and Community Medicine.

“The burning of plastic garbage bins must be stopped immediately,” he said.

These chemicals pose a serious threat to pregnant women and can be especially dangerous to children. They are likely to cause headaches, dizziness and breathing difficulties, provoking asthmas attacks and causing long-term damage.

“I don't understand how they burn garbage cans, as it violates Jewish law of protecting lives and health and barring the needless destruction of property,” Richter said.

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