In response to the long awaited release of the Wilmington Childhood Cancer Study from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health on Tuesday, Town Manager Jeff Hull issued the following statement:
First, as Town Manager, I wish to express my deepest sympathies to the families who were forced to deal with a cancer diagnosis of a child. There is no more terrifying diagnosis for anyone to receive and particularly a parent than to be told that their child has cancer.
The Town has just received the results of this cancer study conducted by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) that has been underway for over twenty years. We take the findings of this study very seriously and will be conferring with the Town’s environmental consultant, GeoInsight, to evaluate the findings before determining “next steps.” The public water supply is a basic resource that we all rely upon every single day for a myriad of functions not the least of which is sustenance. Wilmington’s water supply is tested on a regularly scheduled basis and continues to meet state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standards for drinking water. All residents receive an “Annual Consumer Confidence Report” no later than July 1st of each year that provides information about water quality. Providing residents and businesses with safe and clean water is a core priority of the Town.
State Representative Dave Robertson (D-Tewksbury) issued the following statement:
After many years the Wilmington MA Cancer Cluster study has been released, and with the families notified, results are open to the public.
Despite the sample size, the Department of Public Health was able to ascertain that the presence of NDMA lead to an increased risk of cancer to children who received doses in-utero, with an odds ration of 5. To be put in simple terms, this means there was a 500% increase in the odds of a child in the Kelly Hill area developing cancer than a child not exposed to the conditions in the Kelly Hill area.
EPA, DEP, and relevant parties have been made aware, and Wilmington’s drinking water is safe at the moment. This study, though long, is a welcome step in rectifying the damage done to the town and ensuring that children are safe. Full results can be seen at the link below.
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