BRHP – Between a Rock and a Hard Place

Science Blog on Mobile Phone Radiation and Health by Dariusz Leszczynski

BRHP – Between a Rock and a Hard Place

EHS: California Appellate Court holds that Wi-Fi sickness is a disability

…updated on February 26, 2021…

The case of EHS (Wi-Fi sickness) in California is of importance and of interest to a broader readership. It is a very good news for all EHS persons but… will be seen what will happen next...I am re-posting text from the US website of LEXOLOGY.

The text, quoted below, has first appeared in this link of LEXOLOGY

USA February 23, 2021


Is Wi-Fi sickness a disability? The California Court of Appeal just said it is in Brown v. Los Angeles Unified School District (2d Dist., Div. Eight), Case No. B294240. In a case that tests the limits of California’s liberal pleading standard, the appellate court green-lighted a claim of a woman who asserted a disability of “electromagnetic hypersensitivity,” or, as the concurring justice put it, “Wi-Fi sickness.”

The trial court had sustained a demurrer, granting judgment for the employer, a school district. The appellate court revived the plaintiff’s claim for failure to provide a reasonable accommodation.

The court acknowledged that it is likely the first to recognize Wi-Fi sickness as a disability under laws against discrimination. In fact, the court discussed contrary federal court authority, distinguishing those cases by concluding that the definition of “disability” in California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act is broader than in the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Apart from the holding that Wi-Fi sickness is a disability under FEHA, California employers should take note of the facts alleged about the failure to provide a reasonable accommodation.

After the school district installed a new Wi-Fi system, the plaintiff teacher complained of headaches and other symptoms caused by exposure to the electromagnetic waves. The school district initially tried to accommodate the teacher by turning off the Wi-Fi in her classroom and an adjacent one. The teacher said that her symptoms persisted and asked for additional accommodations. By that point, the school district’s consultant had reported that the Wi-Fi and radio frequencies at the school “evidenced a safe and non-hazardous working environment.” Based on that report, the school district did not grant any further accommodation, and the teacher sued.

In his concurring opinion, Justice Wiley expressed reluctance “about giving any sort of green light to this unprecedented and unorthodox disability claim.” But that’s exactly what the court did.

The decision serves as a reminder of just how easy it is to survive a pleading challenge in California.


The full verdict is accessible from this link.

It is very interesting to see what will happen next and how this verdict will be, because it certainly will be, challenged.

As mentioned in the LEXOLOGY news text above, the unnamed expert advised school that Wi-Fi is safe.

14 thoughts on “EHS: California Appellate Court holds that Wi-Fi sickness is a disability

  1. Pingback: EHS: California Appellate Court holds that Wi-Fi sickness is a disability - Stop 5G International

  2. Pingback: EHS: California Appellate Court holds that Wi-Fi sickness is a disability | Smart Meter News

  3. Pingback: בית משפט בקליפורניה הכיר במורה רגישה לקרינה כמוגבלת תפקודים ואסר על הפליה שלה בעבודה - ללא קרינה בשבילך

  4. Pingback: Wi-Fi Sickness / Electromagnetic Sensitivity is a Disability Says California Appellate Court

  5. Pingback: Wi-Fi Sickness / Electromagnetic Sensitivity is a Disability Says California Appellate Court - United Push Back

  6. Please read explanation in the very first blog that I posted in 2009… Yes, BRHP has a meaning… to me

  7. Dariusz, I don’t know where else to post this question, so I will put it here.
    Perhaps it is of interest to others too.

    Why is your blog called “Between a Rock and a Hard Place”?

    Does it have some personal meaning to you, or why did you name the blog this way? Does the name signify something in relation to RF and biology? Are you personally BRHP with the contents of this blog, or is the name unrelated to RF/EHS? If it is related, in what way is it related?

    Just curious about the name, and trying to understand if it has any significance to what we are reading about here every day.

    Thank you.

  8. Note that in fact the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended by the Americans with Disabilities Amendment Act of 2008) is even broader than the California Act. If something impairs your ability to perform major life activities (working, breathing, sleeping, reading, thinking, digesting, etc) or impairs a bodily system, it’s covered. Not sure why they are saying differently. Under the California Act, the both prongs are required to prove disability.

  9. Pingback: California Appellate Court holds that Wi-Fi sickness is a disability • ZERO5G

  10. Here is a more complete source for the atrocious comments made by Judge Wiley, which I’ll also just post here (I am putting out a newsletter on this case via newsletter):

    Sounding a warning note to the lower court, Wiley said:

    “There is debate in the medical community over whether sensitivity to electromagnetic voltage is a physical disorder or a psychological one.”

    “I worry about giving any sort of green light to this unprecedented and unorthodox disability claim. Plaintiff’s counsel was most reluctant at oral argument to admit it, but it seems clear we are the first court in the United States of America—a nation of over 300 million people—to allow a claim that ‘Wi-Fi can make you sick.’”

    “Nearly everyone wants the phenomenal convenience of the virtual world in your hand, everywhere you go, and the faster the better. All the potential defendants responding to this popular demand may take solemn note of news that, as of today, their Wi-Fi systems now may possibly invite costly litigation from members of the public who say that Wi-Fi made them sick. And potential plaintiffs and their counsel will have an interest too.”

    “The law worries about junk science in the courtroom. One concern is that a partisan expert witness can bamboozle a jury with a commanding bearing, an engaging manner, and a theory that lacks respectable scientific support.”

  11. Please remove my previous comment. The court did in fact say that illness due to WiFi exposure is a disability. However, note that the plaintiff has not won her case. The case has been remanded to the lower court for a hearing. The court had thrown the case out, stating that there was not a valid claim. Let’s hope she wins. It will be a big win for all of us!

  12. I have had full, permanent paid Disability Income based Solely on my ElectroMagnetic Sensitivity since 2012. (California) And, I tell how I was able to do this in my book…
    Anne Mills, author, ALL EMF*d UP

  13. Thank you! This is very good news. I hope you follow up on the inevitable appeal.

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