A new and more powerful mobile phone tower to be built at this site in Banora Point has raised fears over the safety of young children.
A new and more powerful mobile phone tower to be built at this site in Banora Point has raised fears over the safety of young children. Rick Koenig

Fears phone tower could hurt Tweed children

FURIOUS parents in Banora Point fear a phone tower proposed to be built within 500 metres of a primary school and two childcare centres could negatively affect the brains of developing children.

In November, Vodafone put forward a development application for a powerful new 35-metre mobile phone tower to be built within 250 metres of Banora Point Primary School, despite a policy by the NSW Department of Education stating it recommends towers be "at least 500 metres" from the boundary of a school property.

Cherubs Preschool and Caterpillar Tree Family Day Care are also within the 500-metre limit.

The window to provide submissions for the application was opened over the busy Christmas period and has since closed, something parents believe was done intentionally to limit opposition.

Concerned parent Christine Thomas, who lives within 50 metres of the proposed site with her three young children, said the telecommunications company had not undergone community consultation and tried to "sneak through" the application without anyone noticing.

"They have shown complete brute and disregard for any policies put in place to safeguard our children," she told the Tweed Daily News.

"These safeguards have been put in place over research and deliberation yet they're just doing what they want.

"They haven't given any consideration to our children's wellbeing in this community, they're our most vulnerable and we're their voices."

In one submission opposing the tower, one mother wrote how her child had a terminal illness and she feared for his health if the proposed tower were to be built.

A Change.org petition has since been created to stop the proposed development, while Tweed MP Geoff Provest has stepped in after a number of teachers, parents and residents raised concerns. "It will be fantastic to have better mobile coverage in Banora Point, but the school and concerned residents have been clear in their desire to be consulted before the development proceeds," Mr Provest said.

"I will also be writing to Tweed Council to ask them the defer consideration on the Development Application until further consultation can take place."

To sign the petition click here.



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