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French woman granted disability for Wi-Fi allergy

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A former French radio producer has been awarded a disability grant from a court in Toulouse, France, for her allergy to electromagnetic radiation from common household items including TV and radio transmitters, microwave ovens and mobile phones.

Marine Richard is allowed to claim £580 ($893) per month for three years, news reports said.

Ms. Richard believes she suffers from electromagnetic hypersensitivity. Those who are sensitive to electromagnetic fields experience headaches, sleeplessness, ear pain when using a mobile phone, skin tingling and problems with concentration and memory, which forces them to avoid objects that emit radiation in the home, according to scientists who have studied people who believe they have the condition.

French courts have refused until last week to pay disability allowances to individuals suffering from the peculiar condition.

EHS sufferers in France have reportedly established “radiation-free” colonies in the countryside because people who are sensitive to electromagnetic fields allegedly benefit from living in remote areas. The thirty-nine-year-old Ms. Richards now lives in a barn without electricity in a remote area in the mountains of southwest France, according to reports.

Her lawyer, Alice Terrasse, said the ruling set a legal precedent for “thousands of people,” news reports said.

The condition is recognized by the World Health Organization, though it says the causes are unclear. EHS is officially recognized by the U.S. and Sweden as a condition but not in the U.K., because Public Health England says there is no scientific evidence that electromagnetic fields damage people's health, according to news reports.