In the News

Forced Arbitration – The Stealth War on Women’s Rights

While working for now-defunct retailer Circuit City, Tia Holloman was subjected to two months of appalling sexual harassment that included her supervisor exposing his genitals to her, grabbing her and parading her around the store when she tried to escape his abuse — an event that was recorded by the store’s surveillance camera.

Rep. Shimkus' Draft Bill Grants Immunity to the Chemical Industry for Poisoning Americans with Dangerous Toxins

Far too often the lives of American families are dangerously impacted by chemicals in our drinking water, children’s toys and consumer products. The Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) must be reformed to effectively protect the public, but Rep. John Shimkus' (R-IL) draft bill doesn't come close as it eviscerates public health safeguards, preempts state law and grants immunity to the chemical industry.

GM Recall A Knew-And-Failed-To Issue

General Motors has become the latest corporation to issue a recall for a product that poses a significant safety risk for the public. 

On Tuesday, the AP reported that GM is recalling 1.6 million small cars to fix faulty ignition switches linked to multiple fatal crashes. The recall says a heavy key ring or jarring from rough roads can cause the ignition switch to move out of the run position and shut off the engine and electrical power. That can knock out power-assisted brakes and steering and disable the front air bags. 

This safety hazard has been linked to 31 crashes and 13 front-seat deaths. 

The alarming fact is that according to reports GM knew about the problem for 10 years, but made no effort to alert the public know or issue a recall even though there were deaths. 

This is another case of "Knew-And-Failed-To."

Dropbox Drops Users' Rights Through Forced Arbitration

Did you get the late-night email from Dropbox about their updates? (Here’s the blog post in case you missed it.) If you are wondering what the innocuous language about "adding an arbitration section" really means, it's simple: it means if Dropbox lets your data slip into the wrong hands, you are out of luck and they can't be held accountable. 

CVS To Halt Cigarette Sales

Three cheers for CVS!

On Wednesday, the drugstore made the decision to take cigarettes off the shelves of its 7,600 stores. 

According to reports, CVS is the first national chain to eliminate tobacco products in what could be a precedent-setting move if other stores make a similar decision to follow suit. 

Sales are projected to end by Oct. 1. 

AAJ President Shares Influential Asbestos Story

Asbestos is the quintessential example of corporations knowing that they are marketing deadly products and covering up the evidence for profit.  In many cases, asbestos manufacturers are fully aware that their workers were dying at alarming rates, yet they hide the dangers.

Patient Safety Should Be No. 1 Concern

If 20 jetliners began crashing weekly, said a safety expert recently, "There would be a national ground stop. Fleets would be grounded. Airports would close. There would be a presidential commission. The NTSB would investigate. No one would fly until we had solved the problems." You're probably now thinking, "What kind of crazy hypothetical is that?"

Forced Arbitration Eliminates Justice for Atlanta Homeowner

Greg Cole owns a house outside Atlanta valued at almost half a million dollars - but according to Greg, he cannot even sleep in it. He believes construction problems caused cracks, which led to leaks and mold. The mold became so bad he and his family had to move out after becoming sick from the mold.

When Greg went to seek justice he found another hidden danger – a forced arbitration clause buried in the fine print of his contract with his homebuilder. According to CBS of Atlanta, this meant that he could not take his case to court, but instead was forced to go before an arbitration panel that was handpicked by the homebuilder.

As CBS of Atlanta reported, all consumers are at risk because forced arbitration clauses, like the one that was used against Greg, grant corporations a license to steal and violate the law. See video here

Video: Donohue, U.S. Chamber Continue Lawsuit Hypocrisy

On Wednesday, Jan. 8, U.S. Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Tom Donohue continued his blatant lawsuit hypocrisy at the U.S. Chamber’s annual State of American Business address. 

Watch and listen to Donohue in his own words claim that the courtroom should be open for the U.S. Chamber but for not consumers.  We call that “Do as I Say, Not as I Sue” 

Video: AAJ President Discusses Generic Drugs

Nearly 80 percent of all prescriptions in the U.S. are filled with the generic version of a drug.  The price tag can be appealing, but taking a generic drug can also have dangerous consequences because generic drug manufacturers are not accountable for the safety of drugs they produce.

Accountability is a key incentive to ensure drug companies monitor and adequately warn patients about the safety of drugs. Despite what many may think, the FDA does not test drugs, but instead relies on testing provided by the drug companies.  FDA approval of a drug does not guarantee safety.  

In the above video, American Association for Justice President Burton LeBlanc talks about the accountability imbalance between generic drugs and name-brand drugs and how the lack of accountability can put consumers at risk. 

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