Jul 11, 2013
Justice Denied: 71 ALEC Bills in 2013 Make It Harder to Hold Corporations Accountable for Causing Injury or Death
From Center for Media and Democracy by Brendan Fischer
As most now acknowledge, CMD has been at the forefront in developing comprehensive data on ALEC model legislation since mid-2011 when a whistleblower provided them with hundreds of ALEC documents. This article addresses only one of hundreds of issues pursued by ALEC. It is an important issue to consumers but through lack of media attention and difficult to understand language, most American’s do not know what the term “Tort” means or how “Tort Reform” (as defined by ALEC and their corporate members) impacts their daily lives. Basically, these laws advanced by ALEC are designed to help lessen responsibility and liabilities of companies and corporations responsible for death, injury or damages caused from faulty products, services or other actions. These ALEC designed laws are used to limit monetary awards for actual and punitive damages caused as a result of their negligence or product failures.
These “Tort Reform” bills are “designer laws” advanced to protect companies, manufacturers and businesses – not consumers and average American’s as such laws are intended to do. Below are excerpts from Fischer’s article that include the chart showing the tort laws disseminated by corporations through ALEC…
“For decades, ALEC has been a conduit for the oil, tobacco, and pharmaceutical industries to push legislation that changes the rules to limit accountability when a corporation’s products or actions cause injury or death — such as when a Koch Industries pipeline explodes and kills teenagers, or when the tobacco or pharmaceutical industries withhold evidence that their products are dangerous. In just the first six months of 2013, seventy-one ALEC bills that advance these “tort reform” goals have been introduced in thirty states (see chart below).
“Each of these bills would weaken the legal rights of everyday people who are wrongfully harmed by a corporation or health care provider,” says Joanne Doroshow, Executive Director of the Center for Justice & Democracy, a group that works to protect the civil justice system and fight tort reform. “[The bills] are carefully crafted to provide relief and protections for the industries who wrote them.”
This is one of the ways in which American’s are slowly being stripped of rights and protections…while corporate interests acquire more of each.
To read the full article, click -> HERE <-