Ethan A. Huff
July 8, 2016
Was former New Brunswick chief medical officer of health, Dr. Eilish Cleary, on the verge of blowing the lid about Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide and its danger to humans? Or is it simply a bizarre coincidence that she was mysteriously fired from her position just weeks before she was set to unveil an official report assessing the risks associated with this pervasive weedkiller?
Many environmental groups throughout Canada are seeking answers to these important questions, as Dr. Cleary’s temporary replacement, Dr. Jennifer Russell, won’t agree to talk, and neither will her spokespeople. Dr. Cleary simply picked up where Dr. Russell left off, officials are claiming, and that’s the end of that – or is it?
In a letter to Dr. Russell, Ann Pohl of the Kent County branch of the Council of Canadians, is demanding that Dr. Cleary’s report – or at least what was completed of it before Dr. Cleary was let go – be released immediately for public review. Many fear that this is yet another instance of corporate corruption silencing the truth about the world’s most widely used herbicide, which the World Heath Organization (WHO) found to be probably carcinogenic to humans.
“We need to see that report now,” Pohl’s letter demands. “It is not clear to us if your report has been scrapped, suppressed, or something else has happened.”
An earlier letter from Dr. Cleary to Pohl from last August, when she was still in her position, elicited a positive response about a formidable action plan to be released “in the coming year.” But, before that plan could be released, Dr. Cleary was told to pack her bags and go home, with no logically defensible reason as to why.
If you question the safety of industry cash cows like glyphosate, prepare to be punished
Shortly after Dr. Cleary’s firing, the province’s deputy minister of health, Tom Maston, released a statement claiming that Dr. Cleary’s release had absolutely nothing to do with her conclusions about glyphosate, nor did it have anything to do with the potential contents of her soon-to-be-released report.
But, not everyone is convinced, especially since Maston’s statement was a direct response to the widespread backlash that ensued over the controversial decision. When Dr. Cleary was first fired, no explanation whatsoever was given as to why, which is why many people throughout the region and country are asking some serious and pointed questions.
“Thousands and thousands of New Brunswickers share the concerns I have penned on behalf of our Kent County NB Chapter of the Council of Canadians,” Pohl’s letter adds with succinct clarity.
“Valid population and environmental health research of the risks associated with these compounds is urgently needed. We sincerely hope that the report you have been working on will meet the tests for being valid, in depth and independent. Please send me the report that we are promised.”
Part of the impetus for Pohl and others’ suspicions is that Canada’s Progressive Conservative (PC) Party had earlier tried to bury the findings of a report Dr. Cleary had conducted on shale gas, a.k.a. hydraulic fracturing, another hot-button political issue. Dr. Cleary’s work in this area was eventually allowed to be released, but only after considerable pressure was put on the PC government.
Canadian officials claim that Dr. Cleary’s report, with whatever changes or alterations are possibly being made under the direction of Dr. Russell, is “nearing completion,” though no official timeline for its publishing has been announced.