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IPEN

A Toxics-Free Future

Human Rights

The Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management (SAICM) is the only international agreement that addresses the full range of known and newly discovered health and environmental concerns associated with the production and use of chemicals. The 2006 decision that established SAICM expires in 2020 and now there is a global process to determine what comes next. IPEN and Pesticide Action Network collaborated to produce a series of documents that highlight civil society views on key topics for the Beyond 2020 process. The papers describe SAICM’s importance, how chemical safety can contribute to sustainable development, and how actions should be financed. In addition, the papers deal with the relationship between women and chemical safety, how the industry should reduce and eliminate hazard through design, and the connection between human rights and chemical safety.

IPEN Co-Chairs Pamela Miller and Olga Speranskaya sign a statement in support of workers and former workers of Samsung at the IPEN 2016 Global Meeting & Toxics-Free Future Forum

November 18, 2016: An Open International Declaration To the Board of the Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.--   A Call for Justice and Human Rights for the Workers, Former Workers and Their Families

Issued from the Global Meeting of IPEN—San Francisco, California USA

English / Español

IPEN is a global network of more than 500 public interest non-governmental organizations (NGOs) working in 116 countries to establish and implement safe chemicals policies and practices that protect human health and the environment. This week, 120 of IPEN’s environmental, health and human rights leaders from 55 countries are meeting in San Francisco, California in the U.S. for a Global Meeting and Toxics-Free Future Forum (14-18 November 2016). During this meeting, we have had the opportunity to hear first-hand accounts of the ruthless treatment and negligence perpetrated by Samsung against its workers. We are outraged by Samsung’s illegal tactics that include brutal and unsafe working conditions, toxic exposures, physical and mental harassment, use of child labor, wiretapping, bribery, and thwarting of unionization. These unconscionable actions violate the fundamental human rights, health, and dignity of the workers and their families.

한국어 IPEN has joined with trade unions and public interest organizations to endorse a letter from Supporters of Health and Rights of People in the Semiconductor Industry (SHARPS) to Mr. Jae-yong Lee, the heir apparent of Samsung Electronics. The letter urges Mr. Lee to initiate a new dialogue with SHARPS about his company’s occupational disease victims. As of September 2016, SHARPS has profiled 223 Samsung Electronics employees who developed a variety of serious diseases including leukemia, brain tumors, and multiple sclerosis. Of the 223 victims, 76 have died.
 
A recent AP investigation outlined how Samsung has requested government authorities to withhold critical information from sick workers about chemical exposures. The Samsung issue is occurring during a global effort to address hazardous substances within electronics as a global emerging policy issue under the Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management.
 

IPEN Participating Organization Ecological Alert and Recovery-Thailand (EARTH), along with Chulalongkorn University, National Health Commission Office of Thailand, Kumamoto Gakuen University, and Collaboration Center for Minamata Disease Victims, organized a program and public conference from 9th-12th September, 2016 in Thailand. The program aimed to discuss lessons learned from the Minamata industrial disaster and how to apply those lessons for a sustainable society and environment.

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