The U.S. Congress passed versions of legislation last year designed to replace the 40-year-old Toxic Substances Control Act. That act was initially designed to protect American citizens from various toxic substances. Over the years, the Act has become obsolete and completely unworkable, necessitating a new law that would be in keeping with the times. Currently, as many as 1,000 hazardous substances – which are still on sale today – have not been evaluated to determine whether they should be banned or restricted. There is a need for significant changes in the old law to become current with the time.
In light of these issues, both houses of Congress proposed legislation designed to overhaul the Toxic Substances Control Act. The House of Representatives has produced legislation that attempts to overhaul the Act, but in so doing, it has incorporated what I will refer to as the “Monsanto Clause” at the request of the House Energy and Commerce Committee. This addition to the bill would shield Monsanto from all liability resulting from PCB exposure, which is unthinkable. The provision also will open the door for Monsanto to argue immunity for its clear disregard for human health in other areas of concern. It appears that no other company would receive such special treatment as Monsanto gets in the bill.
These antics on Capitol Hill are a prime example of why American citizens are fed up with the political establishment. Clearly, someone did a big favor for Monsanto. When this immunity provision was put into legislation designed to overhaul an outdated Hazardous Substances Act. Those who proposed the addition to the bill and those who voted for the bill should be ashamed of themselves. We invite our readers to call their members of Congress and demand that the “Monsanto” clause be removed from the new Toxic Substances Act. Members of congress should be concerned with protecting their constituents from corporations like Monsanto – not shielding them from responsibility – and they should show their concern by acting appropriately.
Monsanto has a long history of choosing profits over human health. The PCBs they manufactured for years have been proven to cause cancer. Several years ago, lawyers in our firm joined with Johnnie Cockran and we sued Monsanto in an Alabama Federal Court on behalf of individuals in Calhoun County, Alabama. After a tough battle, we reached a landmark $700 million settlement with Monsanto in that case. It was discovered that Monsanto created a wasteland in Anniston, by dumping thousands of gallons of the cancer-causing PCB in the area.
Over the past few months, Monsanto has come under fire for a key ingredient in its Roundup herbicide called glyphosate, which has been linked to non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in folks who have used the herbicide for an extended period of time. Lawyers in our firm are currently investigating cases where agriculture workers were exposed to glyphosate and developed non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
If you have any questions about any of the above, contact Parker Miller, a lawyer in our firm’s Toxic Torts Section, at Parker.Miller@beasleyallen.com or 800-898-2034.
Source: The New York Times
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