Wednesday, August 7, 2013

They are gagging YOUR kids...literally

Have you ever told a child not to tell something? WHY?  And how long did their silence last?

The gas industry has been known for paying people in return for their silence, though this takes the cake.

Speak up before they silence YOUR children next.

The Hallowiches, former anti-fracking activists, had been living on a 10-acre farm in Mount Pleasant when they brought a lawsuit against Range Resources, Williams Gas/Laurel Mountain Midstream and MarkWest Energy. They claimed that the adjacent Marcellus Shale operations damaged the health of their family, including their children, then 7 and 10, by causing burning eyes, sore throats, headaches and earaches. 

They also claimed operations contaminated their drinking water and rendered their property worthless. They had purchased it in 2005, unknowingly inheriting a lease with Range Resources. Soon after the Hallowiches built their house in 2007, gas wells, access roads, a gas-processing facility and compressor stations were constructed on bordering properties, bringing with them noise, lights and emissions, according to reports. 

The hearing transcript about the children’s gag order, ordered public by a judge along with the other court records last week, shows the Hallowiches agreed to the restrictive terms of the settlement—which also included the signing of a statement saying that the family’s health was not negatively affected by the drilling—in order to be able to move on from the situation.

“We have agreed to this because we needed to get the children out of there for their health and safety,” Stephanie said, according to the transcript. “My concern is they’re minors, I’m not quite sure I fully understand. I know we’re signing for silence forever, but how is this taking away our children’s rights being minors now?”

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