CTIA Sues City of San Francisco Over Wireless Law
Jul 23, 2010, 2:20 PM by Eric M. Zeman
The CTIA Wireless industry trade association has filed a lawsuit against the city of San Francisco. Specifically, it is seeking to prevent San Francisco from enforcing its new "Right to Know" law, which will require mobile phone retailers to post the Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) of cell phones next to where they are displayed. San Francisco has passed a preliminary version of the law, but the CTIA argues it is unnecessary and will lead to confusion for consumers. The CTIA argues that in order to be sold in the United States, all cell phones must pass SAR tests at the Federal Communications Commission. As a phone cannot be sold unless it is labeled as safe by the U.S. government, the CTIA thinks San Francisco's law in superfluous. The CTIA said in a statement, "CTIA's objection to the ordinance is that displaying a phone's SAR value at the point-of-sale suggests to the consumer that there is a meaningful safety distinction between FCC-compliant devices with different SAR levels. The FCC has determined that all wireless phones legally sold in the United States are 'safe.' The FCC monitors scientific research on a regular basis, and its standard for RF exposure is based on recommended guidelines adopted by U.S. and international standard-setting bodies." The CTIA also insists that the ordinance intrudes on the authority of the FCC, is not scientifically supported, and is unconstitutional. The CTIA association also recently cancelled plans to locate its fall trade conference in San Francisco in protest of the ordinance.
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