Serious concerns have been raised by People Before Profit Councillor Madeleine Johansson about the continued use of the dangerous chemical glyphosate for weed control. In May 2017 a motion was passed by councillors to stop the use of glyphosate by the council, and in 2019 the council stated that its own staff no longer used this chemical. However, Councillor Johansson was contacted this week by a staff member who claims that public realm staff are still being encouraged to use glyphosate. The staff member, who wishes to remain anonymous, raises concerns about the use of the weed killer in public areas with no regard for the effects on the public of this possibly carcinogenic chemical.
Cllr Johansson commented: “I’m very concerned about the information I have received from a staff member about the continued use of glyphosate. This chemical is a possible carcinogenic and should not be used in public spaces. It also has a damaging effect on the general environment because it kills plants that are beneficial to biodiversity. In a question I asked about the use of glyphosate in July 2019 the council stated that it no longer uses glyphosate where weed control is done by directly employed staff. If the council has gone back to using this chemical that is extremely concerning. I have contacted the council about this issue and am waiting for a reply.”