To increase higher yield, product quality should be ensured. Thus, farmers apply pesticides to protect agri-produce. But how far these pesticides protect? As to concern to Filipino farmers, legislators proposed an act to protect farmers.
House Bill (HB) 6279, or the proposed Farm Workers’ Protection Act aims to protect farmers from agricultural hazards, significantly, harmful pesticides. The said legislation is being pushed in congress to address the ongoing concerns of farmer’s health being exposed by various chemicals from pesticides.
Concerns that the bill would like to address
According to the Deputy Speaker Sharon Garin of Aambis-OWA party-list,principal author of the proposed act,”arund 5 million people die every year as a result of intentional, accidental, and occupational exposure to pesticide poisoning, “as she cited the Journal of Rural Medicine of the Japanese Association of Rural Medicine.
Apart from farmers’ health concern, Garin also shared that in Northeast Luzon, children in the area were reported to have health symptoms, such as headaches, skin irritation and abdominal pain after the use of chemicals.
Effects of pesticides
Organophosphate insecticides, carbamates and synthetics pyrethroids are types of common pestides utilized in farm production but develop a high risk of danger in human’s health. As organophospate absorbed by human attains adverse effects on the nervous system.
“On the other hand, carbamates are known carcinogens, while pyrethroids may also cause users to experience dizziness, headache, nausea and diarrhea while exposure to immense doses leads to acute poisoning and can be fatal,” Garin said.
The proposed legislation would also educate farmers and families on the effects of the hazards that may occur as being exposed to pesticides and more significantly, how to avoid exposure contamination.
Department of Agriculture is responsible to assess and establish penalties and fines. Respectively, the said department will also cater reports on incidents about direct exposure of pesticides.