Nice one, Forest Hills Times-Ledger

by nobugsonme on May 18, 2007 · 7 comments

in bed bugs, bed bugs in schools, new york, queens, usa

Small, local newspapers sometimes know their stuff better than some of the larger papers. The Forest Hills Times-Ledger (in Forest Hills, which is a neighborhood in Queens, NYC) just covered the Gianaris bill, successful in the NYS legislature and headed for the NYS senate.

But what caught my eye was this:

The insect, which dwells in mattresses, under carpets, on furniture and in walls, is generally active at night, reproduces rapidly and can be transferred from one person to another.

I think the press is starting to really catch on. Only a few short months ago, we regularly saw news outlets telling people to dust some flea powder and throw out your mattresses.

Nice work Nathan Duke!

1 Bugalina May 18, 2007 at 10:24 am

Nicely put…..the truth….its an ugly truth and that’s why people don’t want to face it…So Thank you for the 134 to 0 vote….I hope that the NYS Senate isn’t afraid of the ugly truth.. Bed bugs are an ugly bug , but sticking your head in the sand and hiding behind the truth is the wrong way to go…Major Kudos to Assemblyman Gianaris …Make the public aware ..educate them ..

2 Winston O. Buggy May 18, 2007 at 6:58 pm

“transferred from one person to another” While variations on this theme do exist,
I would be careful with this terminology and following image for several reasons.
1. It distorts the introduction reality and makes it sound a bit too casual.
2. It sounds like an STD.
3. This image if played up could result in a backlash and a plague like
avoidance of anyone who has or has had bb.
Not too mentioned possible workplace/ school issues.
While suffering from bed bugs can be an extreme negative and educating
others is vital a ” Scarlett BB” approach is probably not the way to go.
Many folks who serve vital roles like home care attendants, visiting nurses and
case workers need to realize they can control the risks. By using the transferred from one person to another image these people may freak and lose perspective.

3 nobugsonme May 18, 2007 at 7:10 pm

Hi Winston,

You’re absolutely right–we don’t want a scarlet letter situation!

I was happy to see this since so often journalists imply that bed bugs are gotten from hotels and used mattresses only. But I would not want people to think it was as easy as catching a cold, or that people should be avoided.

Perhaps it could be clarified to say that bed bugs are adept hitchhikers, and though they usually stay where they’re being fed, they can ride in an article of clothing or a bag to a new location. Even more likely, perhaps, is hitchhiking in a suitcase or secondhand furniture and clothing.

I think people who work in homes, such as those you mention, need to be concerned not only about whether they pick up bed bugs themselves, but also whether they spread them from one client to another. They should absolutely learn to control the risks and should be educated about what bed bugs are and how to spot them.

4 Bugalina May 18, 2007 at 7:32 pm

Well I am, unfortunately the only personI know of on this Blog that actually caught a bed bug in the act of “hitching a ride” on me…Had my husband not been in the room with me, the bed bug would have achieved its goal of finding a nice spot in my clothing and exiting the house with me….I swear this on a stack of any religious book of choice !! We were getting ready to walk out the door when he yelled STOP and picked the scurrying bed bug, which was headed right UP my shirt ( towards my collar area) , not down, off of my back……Its an ugly truth…that the bugs get transported via clothing, sometimes on, and sometimes off, a person…..hard as it is to accept..we must face the facts that people can bring these bugs into others homes, via their clothing or bags…or as in my infestation case, via a visitors luggage…Working on a good cure to kill them is what we should be demanding…so that everyone, can get a good nite’s sleep…like we used to…

5 willow-the-wisp May 19, 2007 at 5:42 pm

It CAN all too easily get blown out of proportion on the one hand and cause too much panic, yet; a touch of panic, I feel, is very much needed.

This article provides just that to the mix of articles we’ve seen in the past.

If only to get people geared up for making changes to the way they keep their beds and do their laundry and stuff, I think it will do well to greatly reduce the spread of Bed bugs.
I’ve had experiences with the bugs on me in public too, Bugalina, so no … you’re not alone … But–out of all the bugs I had, like, 300? I only saw ONE on me in public, walking around on me in broad daylight. (On the other hand I was in a crowded restaurant too.)
Many more nymphs were in my clothing, at home and only seen, upon close inspection.
What a few days of NEAR terror that was for me. Even as a professionally trained Nurse
I was in a bit of a panic and at a loss as to what to do to combat them and kill them!

I know I have changed my mode of operation in laundry and have isolated my bed. I have kept some bug products handy and am proactive almost to the hilt. I’m still a bit traumatized—but many of my friends feel I’m on overkill. They have not had bed bugs, so, why do they have me over to visit? They know I’d always be so careful to not transmit them via my clothing, but they don’t seem to comprehend that I’m telling them they need to make changes NOW—ahead of time.
I have a friend who, after all my chatter, bought me a pair of second hand pants and asked me to try them on and just put them out for someone else if they did not fit.
She seemed a bit taken aback with my reply: I said to her; “I would not try them on until washed and dried properly, and that the same goes for my putting them out—I told her, her remark was irresponsible. People just don’t get it. Then she tells me she hopes she never gets bed bugs yet in the next breath went out and bought a second hand, leather couch—against all my efforts to inform her of the risks.
I know she will not go over that couch with a fine tooth comb. I do feel it is important to change clothing often and the sealing laundry tightly in plastic with the air–gently let out, taken to the wash and then transferred back into fresh bags is really helpful.
My old way was to leave second hand clothing in the closet in a seperate hamper for a up to a week. I thought such efforts would greatly decrease my catching bed bugs–boy was I ever wrong. See … that’s exactly what you don’t want to do if you buy second hand clothing. Wash it very well BEFORE it ever gets into your home! I do feel that clothing is responsible for at least 15% of bed bug transfers in crowded public settings. We can and SHOULD–easily get that down to 1 or 2 %.

6 willow-the-wisp May 19, 2007 at 5:59 pm

Here are a few more mishaps about to happen:

Yesterday at a bus stop I talked a bit to a guy who lives in a shelter … he told me the shelter does not have hot water. We know, from research, hot water kills all stages of bed bugs. BTW–he does his laundry at the shelter.

I know of a homecare attendant that I heard of, second hand got bit by a bed bug but she has done nothing to aid her client–so I had to go de-infest his bed for him. It’s not her fault–she just doesn’t know! She doesn’t know that when I left his house, I visually inspected all my clothing and the moment I got home I got into the tub, disrobed and made sure there were no bugs on me. She doesn’t know that I took all those clothes-shoes included and double wrapped them in shrink-wrap style double plastic. She doesn’t know, these bags, will be put into another bag–at the Laundromat BEFORE I throw them away, and … that my clean bed bug free laundry … will be whisked home and sorted on a totally bed bug free bed.

WHO is going to tell her all of this WHO? Pun intended.

7 Paul May 27, 2007 at 11:15 pm

Regarding the Bed Bug problem at the Hill Top in Edison:

I was a tenant in one of Middlesex Management communities. I lived 1 mile from the Hill Top. I’m really bothered by the fact that the management company is blaming the problem on its tenants. I had to call the health department on Middlesex Management before. I had (Black) and (Green) mold growing under my kitchen cabinets. When the health department called them they claimed that no mold was found. I have pictures that show a complete different story.

Middlesex Management does not care about its tenants. I was one of 6 break-ins in a three day window back in March. After the mold problems and the break-in I decided to move out of the complex. Can you believe they’re not telling me I’m liable for the rest of the lease (April-September)? They’re true slum lords!

I really feel for the people in the Hill Top. Middlesex Management is only going to look for the “Cheapest” way to patch the problem. They’re not going to address the issue like they should.

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