Councilman Calls for Hearing on Bed Bugs

Mark Squilla says Philadelphia faces a growing problem.

Photo by Piotr Naskrecki, courtesy of CDC/Harvard University.

Photo by Piotr Naskrecki, courtesy of CDC/Harvard University.

Councilman Mark Squilla is calling for a City Council hearing on bed bugs, saying he’s heard anecdotal evidence they’re becoming more prevalent in Philadelphia, particularly in the city’s rowhouses.

“Neighbors have had bed bugs, and it’s creeping into their properties,” he tells KYW Newsradio, “and those people can’t afford to get the bed bugs exterminated.  If you have a person who is on a fixed income, and they found out they have bed bugs, the cost could be thousands of dollars in extermination fees, not counting materials you might have to buy to encase your mattresses and get rid of some of the stuff you have.”

Some fun facts about bed bugs from Wikipedia:

• They feed on human blood.

• “A number of adverse health effects may result from bed bug bites, including skin rashes, psychological effects, and allergic symptoms.”

• Bed bugs are mainly active at night, but are not exclusively nocturnal. They usually feed on their hosts without being noticed.

All of which means: If you’re paranoid that you have bed bugs, it’s probably because you have bed bugs.*

*We’re joking. But writing this post has made us feel itchy and crawly.We want it to stop.

No hearing has been scheduled as yet.