Same thing going on in the East. Let the FOIPOP’s start raining down. West to East same BS !!

BY STEPHEN HUME, VANCOUVER SUN JUNE 6, 2012 The provincial government routinely fails its legal duty to promptly inform citizens of risks to public health and safety, warn legal scholars at the University of Victoria.

Failures to disclose include air pollution, deteriorating infrastructure, parasite infestations, contaminated water and disease risk. Relevant information has been withheld from potential victims, scientists and the media – in some cases for almost a decade, says the university’s Environmental Law Clinic following a study of six cases across B.C.

On Tuesday, the group asked the province’s information and privacy commissioner for a full investigation into what it says appears to be “an ongoing system-wide failure” by government to disclose in timely fashion information with clear public safety implications.

The pattern needs to be addressed “before a catastrophe occurs,” it warned.

“Concerns about ‘panicking’ the public must not become an excuse for withholding information,” the call for investigation says. “In many cases, the fact that the information is alarming is precisely why it must be disclosed.”

The submission, filed on behalf of the B.C. Freedom of Information and Privacy Association, says that under provincial law, public bodies are required to act “without delay” in publicly disclosing information about any “risk of significant harm to the environment or to the health or safety of the public.”

Also….

And in 2008, the researchers say, the BC Centre for Disease Control and the Provincial Health Services Authority are alleged to have failed to promptly disclose at least two pieces of critical information about tick-borne Lyme disease.

Lyme disease is thought to be relatively rare in B.C. and is difficult to diagnose. It is caused by a bacteria transmitted by tick bites. It can have grave effects if not properly treated, but its symptoms often mimic or are masked by those from other serious disorders, creating multiple identification and treatment problems for health professionals and patients.

The UVic researchers say a key study conducted in 2008 and 2009 found that a substantial portion of Lyme disease cases in B.C. go unreported to provincial health authorities by doctors, despite legal obligations to report.

That study suggested that actual Lyme disease cases could be up to 25 times more numerous than previous official estimates. The finding was not released until 2011.

And provincial health authorities waited a year before releasing another key study on chronic Lyme disease in 2010, the submission says.

That study found that testing and treatment in B.C. were poor, that the actual level of infection in B.C. was unknown and that most medical doctors lacked adequate knowledge about the disease and its prevalence.

These findings were not released until 2011 -and only then in response to a freedom of information request, the researchers say.

“This information would have helped B.C. residents and doctors to educate themselves about the risks posed by Lyme disease, empowered people to take preventive measures to reduce their risks of contracting Lyme disease and contributed to an important discussion about changes to policy or law needed to grapple with the risks posed to public health,” the researchers wrote.

But it’s not just the provincial government that is failing to inform the public of potential health or other risks despite obligations to do so, the legal researchers say.

See full story here (nearly a full page):

http://www.vancouversun.com/touch/health/story.html?id=6737535