Tag Archives: Dow Chemical

Dow union passes historic resolution supporting Bhopal survivors

Well, we said it didn’t look like Dow’s year. Bhopal.net can exclusively reveal that the Paper, Allied-Industrial, Chemical & Energy Workers International Union (PACE) unanimously passed a resolution on Bhopal/Dow at its first constitutional convention held in Las Vegas, Nev., Aug. 18-22, 2003. Placing Dow’s squalid double standards in the spotlight, the resolution states that, just as they accepted Carbide’s asbestos liabilities in Texas, 100 percent owner Dow must accept Carbide’s liabilities in Bhopal. In supporting each of the survivors’ demands, the resolution also calls upon the government of India to include ‘Dirty’ Dow in the ongoing criminal case in Bhopal.

“The Resolution sends a clear message to the world that solidarity is alive and strong,” said PACE Legislative Director Pete Strader. “When workers are harmed by a corrupt corporation and/or government, unions show they are truly their brothers’ and sisters’ keeper.” Also supporting the ICJB’s appeal for declaring Dec. 3, 2003 the anniversary of Carbide’s disaster in Bhopal as the Global Day of Action against Corporate Crime, the resolution calls upon all PACE members and workers worldwide to take direct action against rogue corporations.

The resolution came as a result of the meeting in Michigan between PACE members and Rashida Bee and Champa Devi during their US tour in May. Rashida and Champa’s union, Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Stationery Karmachari Sangh, is recognised by PACE as the leading member of the International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal.

The other demands made by survivors and supported by the resolution are:

• Ex-CEO Warren Anderson and Union Carbide should appear in the Bhopal court to face long-pending criminal charges;

• Medical information relating to the toxicity of the gases should be released and provisions for medical rehabilitation and long-term medical monitoring made;

• There should be economic rehabilitation of those injured; and
• There must be clean-up of toxic wastes and contaminated groundwater.

PACE represents workers at three Dow Chemical facilities in the U.S. at Edison, N.J., Bound Brook, N.J., and Elizabethtown, Ky. The union represents 300,000 workers in the pulp, paper, oil, chemical, industrial, auto supply, atomic and mining sectors in the U.S. and Canada, and is the fourth largest manufacturing union in the AFL-CIO (American Federation of Labor – Congress of Industrial Organizations).

Rashida Bee said, “Solidarity like this has helped to keep our fight alive for two decades. Today, members of Dow’s own workforce are in strong support of Bhopal survivors. We expect Dow will realise soon that it’s only a matter of time before corporate criminals are forced to succumb to the pressures of grassroots globalisation.”

Read the full text of the PACE resolution here.

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Now Euro MPs tell Dow, ‘He who pollutes must pay’

Dow must have imagined nobody would notice. Or mused that if your double standards are brazen enough, no one will point them out. From Kathy Hunt’s doe-eyed “but they don’t have Superfund over there, do they?” to Michael Parker’s dead-behind-the-eyes suggestion that the beggarly compensation money intended for gas survivors – yes, you read that correctly, gas survivors – should be used to clean up Carbide’s crime, ‘polluter pays’ was only something you did when you couldn’t possibly get away with it. Well it’s starting to look like Dow can’t. Having Congress on your back about it is bad enough, throw in the European parliament and it’s beginning to look like it might not be your year.

On September 24th members of the Green/FEA group announced that they would be “joining in the action that the members of the US Congress have started against the firm DOW.”

Press Statement

The Green / Free European Alliance

Strasbourg, September 24th, 2003

From Bhopal to Toulouse: no forgetting.

Two years after the Toulouse catastrophe, The Green / FEA group at the European Parliament, welcomed a delegation of victims of the Bhopal disaster (25000 dead, 50000 wounded) during the Parliamentary session of September 2003. At the end of the meeting, the group The Green / FEA pledged to support the fight of the Bhopal victims by joining in the action that the members of the US Congress have started against the firm DOW. The Green / FEA group will demand that the European Commission and the European Council implement all means necessary to give all citizens of Bhopal access to drinking water.

Nearly twenty years after the tragedy, justice hasn’t yet cast full light on the accident, thus delaying the right compensation of victims. While the European Union is discussing the question of environmental responsibility, while the debates at the European Council may weaken, yet a little more, the text voted by the European Parliament, it is indispensable to recall the obligations of the industrialists who work in high-risk sectors.

To enforce the principle ” polluter-payer ” (he who pollutes shall pay) is essential to ensure that justice is done and that industrial disasters victims are compensated. Moreover, the pollution of the soil and ground water, aggravated by systematic dumping of toxic products by DOW Union Carbide, keeps causing serious health problems and congenital malformations. No compensation often means not being able to get treatment. It must be said that in Bhopal, medical care is in a large extent, given freely thanks to determined actors of the Indian civil society, such as Satinath Sarangi wo runs the Sambhavna Clinic : there, treatment is provided freely to survivors. For nearly twenty years now, the environmental catastrophe has been followed by a health disaster.

In the background, the question of a policy of chemicals emerges. The report of Inger Schorling Swedish Green European MP- shows the limits of goodwill in a sector which could be tempted, should a more severe legislation be adopted, to transfer part of its activities to countries unable by lack of means- to enforce such strict laws.

Marie Anne Isler Béguin

Inger Schorling

Paul Lannoye

Members of The Green / FEA goup at the European Parliament

Translation by Carmela Pizarroso (Toulouse)

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Dow wants to test poisons on humans

In 1998 the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) banned testing poisonous chemicals on humans. Now under pressure from the chemical industry, led by Dow Chemical, the Bush administration is moving to endorse such testing and the EPA has begun lifting the ban, despite despite strong opposition from the medical community. According to Dr Joseph Mercola, “Big chemical companies are fans of human research because it encourages less stringent standards. This translates directly into several billion dollars for the pesticide industry, which annually sells nearly 4.5 billion pounds of chemicals – at a profit of more than $6 billion.”

Continue reading Dow wants to test poisons on humans

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Members of Congress tell Dow, Face Up to Your Bhopal Liabilities

WASHINGTON D.C. TUESDAY 22 JULY Eighteen members of Congress have sent a letter to Dow Chairman William Stavropoulos demanding that his company assume liability for the wrongdoings of Union Carbide (its 100% subsidiary) in Bhopal. The Congresspersons, led by Representatives Frank Pallone and Dennis Kucinich are demanding that Dow provide medical rehabilitation and economic reparations for the victims of the tragedy; clean up contamination in and around the former factory site in Bhopal; provide alternative supplies of fresh water to the affected communities and ensure that the Union Carbide Corporation appears before the Chief Judicial Magistrate’s court in Bhopal where it faces criminal charges of culpable homicide.

“The disaster in Bhopal continues and is likely to worsen if Dow Chemical does not step forward to fulfil its responsibilities,” the letter said, adding “It is disheartening to note that a company such as Dow who professes to lead the chemical industry towards ‘responsible care’ shies away from its obligations when truly responsible care can be demonstrated. More disturbing is the manner in which Union Carbide and Dow Chemical have ignored the summons of the Bhopal court. This exposes a blatant disregard for the law.”

On the 24th March Halifax M.P. Alice Mahon filed Early Day Motion 933 in the UK parliament in support of the International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal’s efforts to make Dow and Union Carbide face up to their moral and legal responsibilities in Bhopal. The motion resolves:

“That this House is appalled by the continuing suffering of the people of Bhopal 18 years after the world’s worst environmental disaster; notes that the contaminated land on the site of the disaster has never been cleaned up, that high quantities of lead and organochlorines continue to be found in the breast milk of local women and that the local population is plagued by ill health and birth deformities; congratulates the work of the Sambhavna medical clinic in treating survivors and that of the International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal in trying to make Union Carbide and its present owner Dow Chemical face up to their moral and legal responsibilities; and further applauds the campaign for the extradition from the USA of former Union Carbide CEO Warren Anderson, wanted in India on criminal charges of culpable homicide in connection with the deaths of 20,000 people.”

As reported today by the Bhopal Central Chronicle, Hindustan Times, The Hindu, New Indpress PTI News

Full letter here.
For ICJB press statement at https://www.bhopal.net/oldsite/congressletter.html

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Over 50 UK M.P.s support the ICJB

On the 24th March Halifax M.P. Alice Mahon filed Early Day Motion 933 in the UK parliament in support of the International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal’s efforts to make Dow and Union Carbide face up to their moral and legal responsibilities in Bhopal. The motion also applauds the ICJB’s efforts on the extradition of Warren Anderson, mentioning the work of the Sambhavna clinic. To date, 53 M.P.s have signed onto it. See the full list of signatories and text of the EDM here.

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