Ellen R. Shaffer, Joseph E. Brenner Nov. 6, 2015 Cross-posted from CPATH
The vacuous “tobacco control” provision in the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) virtually capitulates to the demands of multinational tobacco corporations, jeopardizing nations’ health and economic welfare. Public health and medical advocates in the U.S. and abroad consistently urged negotiators to exclude tobacco control protections from trade challenges under the TPP. But tobacco industry opposition won the day, bolstered by corporate allies concerned that addressing the uniquely lethal effects of tobacco in trade agreements could set a precedent for reining in their own practices.
Continue reading TPP Caves to the Tobacco Industry, Threatens Public Health
Reuters reports that leaders of India’s $15 billion pharmaceuticals industry, a major supplier of affordable generics to the world, have joined public health activists in criticizing a new U.S.-led trade deal they say will delay the arrival of new cheap drugs. Industry executives said provisions of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal struck earlier this month between 12 nations that shield new drug data from competitors would hurt their business in those nations.
The Center for Political Accountability and the Zicklin Center for Business Ethics Research at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School rated 500 companies on their political activities. The study found most companies are reporting more of their activities—with some exceptions.
Injured workers are entitled to compensation for permanent disabilities under state workers’ comp laws. Pro Publica investigated how companies in Texas and elsewhere value the injured body parts of their workers and here’s what they found.
By Nicholas Freudenberg, Founder, Corporations and Health Watch
Readers of Corporations and Health Watch are familiar with the argument that the corporate practices that harm health are for the most part perfectly legal. However, recent media coverage of the scandals at Volkswagen and Johnson & Johnson led me to ask why some businesses choose to break the law. In the first, documented thoroughly in Steven Brill’s 15 chapter “docuserial” America’s Most Admired Lawbreaker posted last month on the Huffington Post Highline, the drug and medical device maker Johnson and Johnson (J&J) promoted Risperdal, an antipsychotic drug approved by the FDA for treating schizophrenia to children and older people for a much wider set of indications than those approved by the FDA. In 2013, Johnson & Johnson agreed to pay more than $2.2 billion in criminal and civil fines to settle accusations that it improperly promoted Risperdal.
Continue reading Why VW and Johnson & Johnson Crossed the Line: Towards a Theory of Corporate Law Breaking
Emma Woodford, Founder and Director, Health and Trade Network (HaT)
Cross posted from Health and Trade Network
“… the forces of power, particularly corporate power, are impatient with what is adequate for a coherent community. Because power gains so little from community in the short run, it does not hesitate to destroy community for the long run.” ― Wes Jackson, Becoming Native to This Place
In case you had been asleep for the last ten days, last week in New York the UN finally ratified the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) aiming to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure prosperity for all.
Continue reading Health and Trade: what hope for SDG3?
From the late 1970s to the mid-80s, Exxon scientists worked at the cutting edge of climate change research, documents examined by Inside Climate News show. Exxon documents show that top corporate managers were aware of their scientists’ early conclusions about carbon dioxide’s impact on the climate. They reveal that scientists warned management that policy changes to address climate change might affect profitability.