By B.N. Frank
On July 2, a federal appeals court upheld the “Cell Phone Right to Know” law adopted in May 2015 by the City of Berkeley. This affirms Berkeley’s right to require cell phone retailers in the city to notify prospective customers about cell phone manufacturers’ safety guidelines to ensure consumer safety.
This ordinance took many years of hard work and media coverage to make it happen. Thanks to all who testified, fought and never gave up. It’s truly an inspiration for all Americans to fight for the same in local, state, and federal legislation in order to ensure consumer safety.
A landmark 9th U.S. Circuit Court panel has upheld the City of Berkeley’s cell phone right to know ordinance. That ordinance requires retailers to inform consumers that cell phones emit radiation that can exceed federal cell phone radiation limits when close to the body. In upholding this decision, the panel concluded that the public health issues at hand were “substantial” and that the “text of the Berkeley notice was literally true,” and “uncontroversial.”
Further, the panel determined that the Berkeley ordinance did not constitute preemption.
“Far from conflicting with federal law and policy, the Berkeley ordinance complemented and enforced it.”
The panel held that Berkeley’s required disclosure simply alerted consumers to the safety disclosures that the Federal Communications Commission required, and directed consumers to federally compelled instructions in their user manuals providing specific information about how to avoid excessive exposure.
Industry is expected to appeal for a full court en banc review, but this reviewing “panel concluded that CTIA had little likelihood of success based on conflict preemption.”[…]
The Berkeley Cell Phone Right To Know Ordinance requires retailers post a notice with the following text.
“The City of Berkeley requires that you be provided the following notice:
“To assure safety, the Federal Government requires that cell phones meet radiofrequency (RF) exposure guidelines. If you carry or use your phone in a pants or shirt pocket or tucked into a bra when the phone is ON and connected to a wireless network,