Home   Opinion   Mark Cumming Addresses The Peoples’ Movement.

Mark Cumming Addresses The Peoples’ Movement.

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Last Friday, Mark Cumming shared a platform with other NGOs, unions and political representatives to share Comhlámh’s concerns about the TTIP

If I told you that the government could be sued for changing the law on what chemicals are allowed in the processing or preservation of food, you would laugh at me! How could this happen?

Surely any government can legislate for changing and evolving understanding of what is good or bad for public health and wider societal interests, within constitutional limits. Isn’t that the stock and trade of politicians, examining and questioning if our laws are up to date and responding to our evolving society? And isn’t it the role of our courts to protect our rights from any potential infringements of rights from new legislation.

Of course it is.

But Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) provisions within trade deals have allowed companies to sue states in private arbitration fora for millions of euro, claiming their future profits have been affected by regulatory change. But surely this is unfair. But it’s happening already in the Global South and the TTIP contains provision for these to come into place between the EU and the USA.

Is it reasonable that public interests can be subjugated to private interests in this way. Comhlámh is working with other like minded Irish organisations to raise a debate about TTIP and will be taking part in the Irish effort to raise one million signatures across the EU calling on the EU commission to engage wider public debate and scrutiny of this trade deal. Watch this space for more details to come.

You can download a copy of Mark’s speech on the day here.

 



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