The Chemical Industry might be able to poison you without repercussion…Proposed bill would grant immunity to The Chemical Industry for poisoning Americans with dangerous toxins
I try to have faith in our government. Most people laugh at me when I say this and sometimes, I laugh at myself. However, I try to keep the faith that politicians truly want to do what is best for our population. That politicians make decisions and/or pass laws, regulations, ordinances that are there to protect people, not harm them. However, there are times that something comes across my desk that causes me to take a pause, adjust my eyes, re-read again just because I cannot believe specifically what I am reading. That is what happened when I saw an article about a proposed bill called the “Chemical in Commerce Act” that would, if passed by Congress, give virtual immunity to the Chemical Industry.
The bill as proposed by U.S. Rep. John Shimkus would allow the Chemical Industry to control the science the EPA uses to regulate chemicals, preempts states from taking action on dangerous toxins, and all the while ensures that chemical manufacturers cannot be held accountable in the civil justice system. The proposed bill simply protects corporations and prevents corporations from being held accountable for their actions. Even with the current regulations, there are numerous reports each year of thousands of people exposed to dangerous chemicals as a result of some faulty equipment or failure of the chemical industry. The proposed bill would allow the chemical industry to continue to be negligent in their operations with absolutely no accountability or repercussions.
If U.S. Rep. Shimkus’ bill passes, the bill would:
- Prevent state legislators from enacting new regulation to protect their residents;
- Bar states’ attorney general from enforcing state statutes;
- Eliminate the rights of Americans to file civil lawsuits for wrongful death or injuries related to chemical spills;
- Grandfather in 62,000 chemicals whose safety has never been tested;
- Require the EPA to rely solely on industry information to determine the safety of new chemicals; and
- Preserve the same inadequate safety standard used in current law.
The sad reality is, exposures to dangerous chemicals and toxins happen all the time. And the devastating reality is that there are already multiple laws in place to make it difficult for a person injured by such to win a case against the manufacturer for his/her injuries. If this bill passes, the path to prevailing against a chemical industry giant becomes not only paved with difficulty – it will be a complete roadblock for any recovery. This proposed bill, in no way, protects citizens; it is simply there to protect corporate chemical industry giants. This bill will allow chemical manufacturers to cut corners in their operations because if there is an exposure, there is nothing that anyone, no matter what title or how badly affected, can do about it.
This is not a political blog. My political affiliation and how I feel about corporations have absolutely nothing to do with my opinion as to how absurd this proposed bill is. However, if you are reading this in utter disgust, my only suggestion is pay attention to what your elected officials are doing in office. U.S. Rep. John Shimkus is the U.S. Representative for Illinois 15th Congressional District. He has held this position since 1997. His job is to protect his state’s citizens. Understandably, this does include its corporate citizens; however, this bill only protects corporations while taking away the rights of other citizens that are real living and breathing people.
Source: Jere Beasley Report