|ORGANIZATIONS URGE THE PUBLIC TO TUNE IN TO "TRADE SECRETS: A BILL MOYERS' REPORT" -- AN INVESTIGATION OF THE CHEMICAL INDUSTRY
March 26, 2001, PBS 9:00 p.m.
The PBS program being enthusiastically promoted is TRADE SECRETS: A BILL MOYERS REPORT, premiering on PBS Monday, March 26, 2001, 9:00 p.m. ET (check local listings). Renowned Journalist Bill Moyers and producer Sherry Jones report that over the past 50 years our bodies have been exposed to many harmful chemicals. According to the PBS web site, Moyers’ TRADE SECRETS is based on a large archive of secret and shocking industry documents never before published. The investigative two hour program shows interviews with doctors, scientists and historians who are researching the effects of man-made chemicals on human health.
Health and Environmental organizations have launched a nationwide effort to inform their communities of an upcoming PBS television investigative report on the chemical industry by respected journalist Bill Moyers.
Organizers of community viewing events and a massive press release campaign say their goal is to use this program as an opportunity to educate a public that is mostly unaware of the lack of critical scientific testing on thousands of man-made chemicals that are routinely put on the market.
Promotions of the program say that the public needs to know that only a tiny fraction of the more than 80,000 chemicals on the market have been tested, and that the testing required by our federal agencies is woefully inadequate.
Cynthia Wilson, Executive Director of the Chemical Injury Information Network states, "Most Americans believe that man-made chemicals are tested for health and safety before being put in consumer products. Nothing could be further from the truth."
Health organizations focusing on health damage triggered by chemicals say it is intrinsically unfair that a double standard exists that favors the chemical companies and puts unreasonable risks and demands on the public.
The inequity, they point out, is that industry is permitted to market untested chemicals that result in harm, birth defects and chronic illness, but when claims of injury are reported they are attacked by an industry that ironically demands "sound science" to prove cause.
Health and environmental organizations point to movies based on true stories like A Civil Action and "Erin Brockovitch that illustrate how a lack of science and testing on man-made chemicals places an intolerable burden on the individuals harmed.
Betty Mekdeci, Executive Director of Birth Defect Research for Children, Inc. says, "The chemical industry has set the standard for the types of testing and proof of harm that is accepted by the courts. This standard requires extensive and expensive testing that is beyond the scope of community groups fighting for a safer environment. It can take decades and countless injuries before enough acceptable scientific information is available to force industry to restrict the use of those products or take them off the market."
Organizers are thrilled that Moyers is subjecting the powerful chemical/pharmaceutical industry to scrutiny, saying that Moyers’ reputation for integrity and fairness will make this program especially effective because he has a large following of admirers familiar with the high quality and in-depth analyses that he is known for.
The following organizations urge their fellow Americans to view A Bill Moyer’s report: Trade Secrets, premiering on PBS, Monday March 26th (please check local listings):
The Chemical Injury Information Network
Association of Birth Defect Children, (a/k/a Birth Defect Research for Children, Inc.)
The National Coalition for the Chemically Injured
Clean Water Network of Florida
The Cancer Prevention Coalition
Center for Health, Environment and Justice *
The Environmental Working Group *
The Environmental Health Fund *
Women's Voices for the Earth *
DR. SAMUEL EPSTEIN, M.D. OF THE CANCER PREVENTION COALITION: (312) 996-2297
BILL MOYERS RESPONSE TO CHEMICAL INDUSTRY ATTACK ON INVESTIGATIVE REPORT BASED ON CONFIDENTIAL INDUSTRY DOCUMENTS TRADE SECRETS
Houston, Texas, Response to Moyer