Member for Paterson Meryl Swanson has welcomed the start of voluntary blood testing for Williamtown residents, and encouraged affected people to have their blood tested and participate in the epidemiological study.
She also reiterated her call for air testing in the contaminated zone, given that some residents had already registered high levels of PFAS in their blood, despite following precautions not to drink bore water or eat home grown vegetables and eggs.
“I would challenge the view of the Department of Health that the ‘extent of contamination and the exposure pathways are well understood’,” Ms Swanson said.
“There are some in the red zone who remained unconvinced that breathing in dust is not an exposure pathway, and the high blood levels some people are recording do warrant air monitoring.”
Ms Swanson said she would raise the issue of air testing at the next meeting of the Williamtown Elected Representatives Group, chaired by the NSW Department of Premier and Cabinet and including representatives from Defence and Health and the NSW EPA.
“I am still waiting for a reply from the Prime Minister to my request for a briefing on the issue of the Government’s management of PFAS contamination being escalated to his department, a fact I learned in Parliament on Monday from a Government MP when I tabled my motion on the subject,” Ms Swanson said.
Ms Swanson encouraged anyone considering blood testing to read the health advice closely, talk it over with their GP, and take advantage of mental health support on offer.