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People falling victims to diseases ‘environmental in nature’- Hon Fraser

- said Gov’t must act to address open burning of garbage & proper disposal of sewerage
Opposition Leader and Third District Representative Hon Julian Fraser, RA (inset) has suggested that persons in the Virgin Islands are coming down with deadly diseases that can be traced to the environment. Photo: CM Farrington/VINO
A landfill fire at Pockwood Pond, Tortola, photographed from a distance on the night of June 2, 2019. Photo: VINO
A landfill fire at Pockwood Pond, Tortola, photographed from a distance on the night of June 2, 2019. Photo: VINO
DUFF’S BOTTOM, Tortola, VI- Opposition Leader and Third District Representative Hon Julian Fraser, RA has suggested that persons in the Virgin Islands are coming down with deadly diseases that can be traced to the environment.

Speaking during the continuation of the 3rd Sitting of the 4th Session of the 4th House of Assembly at Save the Seed Energy Centre in Duff’s Bottom on June 16, 2022, Hon Fraser said Government can put a stop to the health hazards.

‘When does it stop?’- Hon Fraser

The veteran politician had opened his debate on the Business Licensing Act 2020 by stating that he had received some “bad news” that morning that a woman in his district, who he described as a friend of his, had passed away.

“Madam Speaker, you ask yourself the question as to when does it stop and it hurts even more when you get to believe that there are things that we can do in our community to stop it,” Hon Fraser continued.

‘Gov’t has ‘obligation to people falling victims’

The Opposition Leader said governments before, the current government and governments to come must know “they have an obligation, Madam Speaker, to the people of this territory that are falling victims to some diseases that are environmental in nature and things can be done about it.

“I said before that I go to funerals. I have no secrets, I hold nothing back and I make it clear publicly how I feel about cancer in our society, with high rates of cancer in our society…”

Hon Fraser reiterated that government has a responsibility to address the environmental health hazards in the territory.

“I spoke about that incinerator down at Pockwood Pond, I spoke about open burning in Pockwood Pond, I spoke about the sewage being dumped out there in the water, those are environmental issues. I spoke about that sewage that runs across the street, those are environmental issues, Madam Speaker, that government has a responsibility to fix.”

Meanwhile, the incinerator at Pockwood Pond has been down for some months now. This has reportedly resulted in frequent landfill fires.

15 Responses to “People falling victims to diseases ‘environmental in nature’- Hon Fraser”

  • resident (20/06/2022, 12:09) Like (15) Dislike (6) Reply
    Yiu should've done something when you were a minister, too little too late
  • Angel (20/06/2022, 12:09) Like (3) Dislike (25) Reply
    People were not designed to live forever. We all will die when our time comes, no ifs, ands or buts about that
  • BVIslander (20/06/2022, 12:11) Like (15) Dislike (3) Reply
    and what he needs to add is that after falling victims to these environmental illnesses, persons end up being admitted to the Hospital, where they then contract Covid-19 and die from the virus. He also should reiterate that the BVI Health Services Authority organize a environmental clean up of the hospital, thus creating preventative measures to ensure the the contraction of other diseases does not occur.
  • Really (20/06/2022, 12:38) Like (5) Dislike (5) Reply
    Get sick from the vaccine because this been going on for decades so stop being dumb people. Lack of knowledge is very bad. Why is it world that this is happening even America and you can't burn trash there because it's illegal
  • Still think (20/06/2022, 13:42) Like (11) Dislike (0) Reply

    The toxins from the smoke at the dump may be responsible for the cancer that is killing so many women in this place. Something has to be done about this. Take some of the money that is being used on other things and do a in-depth study. Johnson and Johnson the maker of Johnson baby powder with TALC IS PAYING OUT MILLIONS OF DOLLARS TO WOMEN WHO HAVE CAME DOWN WITH OVARIAN CANCER AFTER USING THE BABY POWDER WITH TALC.

    • @Still think (20/06/2022, 16:47) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
      Thank you, that is also a concern of mine as well. I agree, all the poisonous toxins is blowing in the air is causing a lot of different cancers and other illnesses here in the BVI. To many women is dying from cancer on the Island. This needs to be addressed.
  • Other things (20/06/2022, 14:20) Like (3) Dislike (8) Reply
    In addition the smoke food bbq
    The junks of chicken & pork they consume daily...
  • Another Island (20/06/2022, 14:21) Like (3) Dislike (6) Reply
    Why he now sounds like he wake up and want to solve the 20 year old garbage issue....the govt should use another uninhabited island as a dump site and use barges to move it from the mainland to that island...BVI have plenty islands not in use please govt stop looking backwards and think big vision man. BVI out grown itself now, look people, schools, houses, business, bigger hospital, vehicles etc. Start having more community meetings so people who awake can share ideas, we don't expect govt to think on everything also get the schools involve to come up with solutions, these kids smarter than y'all give them credit for.
    • ??? (20/06/2022, 15:43) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      Wind going still carry the pollutants.
    • Island? (20/06/2022, 18:16) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
      That is no solution. Treating nature like it is a garbage dump is disgusting. Destroying islands that bring people here who spend money into our economy? Which island would you choose? Which one next when that overflows?
      We need to use less. The science tells us but we choose to ignore it.
  • Hmm (20/06/2022, 15:19) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
    this is the issue when you have politicians in office that are expired. they bring nothing new to the table just complaints. He has done nothing constructive for this community over the last 16 years and that's a sign.
  • one eye (20/06/2022, 16:21) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    What a thing to tell the king
  • @ BVIlander (20/06/2022, 19:17) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
  • Scientist (21/06/2022, 06:12) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
    While indeed waste management practices and policies in the Territory are indeed third world, can Mr. Fraser refer us to a single medico-scientific study to support his assertion? Indeed, can he even refer us to any kind of mortality data for the Territory that lists the incidence of chronic diseases in the Territory? A case history does not constitute either medical or scientific proof any more than Mr. Fahie’s recent misadventures in Florida prove that all BVIslanders are involved in narcotrafficking. That said, case histories, where they recur, often inform re for epidemiological studies (ie a study of the incidence of disease in populations as a whole vs. studies of disease in individuals). Mr. Fraser could instead argue that the case history he reports should be a reason to fund an epidemiological study of the Territory, starting with examining causes of death here. We do keep that data here, right? I’d imagine such a study would indicate high incidences of diabetes, obesity, and breast cancer, but it would be difficult to attribute any to poor waste management, in part because the data base would likely be quite small since there are something like 150 annual deaths in the Territory. Indeed, such a study would be useful in terms of deciding public health priorities and policies.

    For the record, I don’t disagree that how wastes are managed here is dreadful and there is (and has been for decades) an urgent need to fix this problem to avoid potential damage to people and the environment. However, it is irrresponsible to say the least to use unsubstantiated pseudoscience to sway public opinion.
    • @Scientist (21/06/2022, 08:24) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
      Must include geographical locations of disease/death to see if population living W of Pockwood shows higher incidence of certain issues, particularly respiratory.
      Either way, there is a BVI attitude that science doesn’t apply because it’s a white man ting.
      So people prefer that we die of obesity and diabetes etc, destroy our last remaining nature, poison our air, use our islands as garbage dumps, instead of doing what the science shows - because it shows we have agency.
      In our effort to show that we are capable of governing ourselves, over and over again we’ve shown we are not. We govern with our ego and insecurity first. And look what happens.

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