Some well-meaning friends have forwarded an e-mail containing what is supposed to be a warning from the Ministry of Health of the United Kingdom warning about the health hazards of the energy-saving compact fluorescent lamp (CFL).
Citing the British health ministry as a source gave the warning authenticity and no doubt many people were duly alarmed, taking the message at face value. I decided to check on the veracity of the warning (www.hoax-slayer.com/ministry-health-warning-energy-saving-bulbs.shtml) and found that the UK actually has no longer a ministry of health. It has been replaced by the Department of Health.
Hoax Slayer says “CFL do contain mercury and caution is required when dealing with a broken bulb. However, this warning is overblown and tends to exaggerate the potential risk posed by broken CFL’s.” While the message has some merit as a warning to CFL users, “the cleanup procedure outlined in the message is poorly stated and does not include all the steps recommended by health authorities,” the website adds.
“Furthermore, the possible dangers associated with CFL’s are more likely to be handled by UK entities other than the Department of Health, most notably the Health Protection Agency (HPA) and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra),” the Hoax Slayer says.
Better bookmark the Hoax Slayer website so you can check the veracity of information like this.
Can’t dance, can’t enter
A reader ([email protected] com) wrote to complain that Opus Bar at Resorts World refused him entry.
Although management would not say publicly the reason he was barred, he suspected it was because he was on a wheelchair. Apparently the management of the establishment has not heard that in some places they even allow wheelchair-bound people on the dance floor without causing any injuries, serious or even minor, to other patrons.
And this guy was not even planning to do the John Travolta performance in “Saturday Night Fever” or Tom Cruise’s in “Risky Business.”
He just wanted to spend time with his friends at their table, probably just going to the restroom occasionally. But perhaps that’s the problem. Opus did not make its restrooms “friendly” to persons with disabilities (PWD).
Can’t fly, either
Czarlota Acelajado-Valdenor said, when they booked a flight to Hong Kong with Tiger Airways, they learned that a companion’s wheelchair had to be checked in but it was free of charge. However, a call center agent informed her if the passenger required a wheelchair to board the aircraft, they would have to pay “an assistance fee of US$25.”
Valdenor said, “I refuse to pay for service that should be rendered free, because it is an inherent right of the disabled passenger to be assisted in (gaining) access to aircraft.”
If the airline would require the differently abled passenger to check in his/her wheelchair, she said the company should provide a substitute at no cost.
Worse, she said the call-center agent would not even give her last name, could not give a reasonable explanation for the policy and would not even refer her to somebody in authority who would be able to answer her questions. Although the agent said she would pass on her complaint to management, Valdenor said she did not get any acknowledgement, like a reference number, to indicate it was duly noted and accepted.
She said PWDs had a right to proper access to all places, including aircraft. They should not be charged “for assistance that should be due to them.”
Send letters to the Consumer, Lifestyle Section, Philippine Daily Inquirer, 1098 Chino Roces Ave. cor. Mascardo and Yague Sts., 1204 Makati City; fax 8974793/94; or e-mail [email protected]