Trans-Atlantic Free Trade Agreement Resources

The safety standards on which we rely daily for our food, medicines and cars. The energy and climate policies needed to save our planet. The new financial regulations designed to prevent banks from gambling with our money and creating another crisis. These are policies that should be determined in open, democratic venues where we have a say. But a group of the largest U.S. and European banks and corporations want to rewrite these safeguards behind closed doors. For over a decade, they have pushed for a new U.S. "trade" deal with Europe – the Trans-Atlantic Free Trade Agreement (TAFTA), which corporate proponents have branded the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) – a deal that would roll back consumer protections on both sides of the Atlantic.

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FDA’s Insufficient Response to Antibiotics in Food Animals

The Obama administration released the National Action Plan for Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria on March 27. The plan comes in response to the president's 2014 Executive Order 13676, “Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria.”

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Interactive Maps and New Report Show State Chemical Safety Policies at Risk from Proposed Federal Legislation

WASHINGTON, March 18, 2015—Two competing bills designed to revise the Toxic Substances Control Act were introduced last week. A new report and interactive maps from the Center for Effective Government unpack the impacts of the two bills. Reducing Our Exposure to Toxic Chemicals: Stronger State Health Protections at Risk in Efforts to Reform Federal Chemical Law discusses the failures of the Toxic Substances Control Act of 1976 and the starkly different Senate bills that attempt to fix them.

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Oregon Officials Want to Ban Toxins from Children’s Products. A Federal Bill Could Stop Them.

Leaded gasoline. Lead-based paint chips. Bisphenol A (BPA) in baby bottles. These are a few things parents no longer have to worry about, thanks to government standards and safeguards. But we still have a long way to go in protecting our children from hazardous chemicals. Manufacturers can still use toxins in children’s products – without disclosing them to consumers.

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Dollar Stores Found Selling Toys, Earrings, and More Containing Lead and Other Toxins

Target and Walmart made headlines in 2013 when both companies pledged to phase-out certain hazardous chemicals from their supply chains, good news for the millions of Americans who rely on these stores for household and personal care products. But discount retailers known as "dollar stores" have yet to follow suit, putting the communities they serve at risk of toxic chemical exposures.

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Wolf in Sheep's Clothing: Bill Promotes Big Industry Interests in the Guise of Helping Small Business

Under the cynical guise of helping small businesses, on Jan. 27, the House Judiciary Committee will mark up, and the House will soon likely pass, the Small Business Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act of 2015 (SBRFIA, H.R. 527).

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UPDATE: Three Reasons the REINS Act Must Be Stopped (Again)

If passed, the REINS Act would require congressional approval of all major rules, potentially endangering the most important safeguards to our health, safety, environment, and economy.

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Unwrapping Cadmium? Parents Worry About Toxic Toys

Only two more shopping days before Christmas. Parents have enough to worry about between trying to find the hottest toys, watching their budgets, and fighting store crowds. They shouldn’t have to worry about whether they are exposing their children to toxins, but the absence of strong federal standards means they do.

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Lead and Mercury in Kids' Toys? A New York County Is Cracking Down on Dangerous Chemicals in Children's Products

UPDATE (Jan. 7, 2015): Albany County Executive Daniel McCoy signed the Toxic-Free Toys Act into law today, effectively banning seven toxic substances from children’s products sold in the county. This is a victory for the parents and advocacy organizations that fought to protect Albany County children from harmful substances linked to cancer, kidney damage, and cognitive impairment. Parents in Albany County will soon be able to purchase children’s products in the county with the peace of mind that they are not exposing their children to toxins.

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On Monday, New York’s Albany County legislature overwhelmingly passed a bill that would protect children from toxins in toys and other products. The Toxic-Free Toys Act bans certain dangerous chemicals from any children’s products sold in the county. The bill is an important step toward safeguarding children from toxins that affect development and cause other health problems.

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UPDATE: Freedom Industries President Faces Criminal Charges for West Virginia Chemical Leak

The FBI has filed criminal charges against Freedom Industries President Gary Southern for allegedly making false statements regarding January’s chemical spill into the Elk River. The FBI’s complaint charges Southern with bankruptcy fraud, making a false oath in a bankruptcy proceeding, and wire fraud. According to the complaint, “Shortly after the leak and discharge of MCHM into the Elk River was discovered on January 9, 2014, Southern engaged in a pattern of deceitful behavior, which included numerous false and/or fraudulent statements about his role at Freedom, his role in the sale of Freedom to Chemstream, and his knowledge about conditions at the Etowah Facility.” If Southern is found guilty on all counts, he could be sentenced to up to 30 years in prison.

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