Thursday, November 17, 2005

EPA TO ALLOW PESTICIDE TESTING ON ORPHANS & MENTALLY HANDICAPPED CHILDREN

Public comments are now being accepted by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on its newly proposed federal regulation regarding the testing of chemicals and pesticides on human subjects. On August 2, 2005, Congress had mandated the EPA create a rule that permanently bans chemical testing on pregnant women and children. But the EPA's newly proposed rule, misleadingly titled "Protections for Subjects in Human Research," puts industry profits ahead of children's welfare. The rule allows for government and industry scientists to treat children as human guinea pigs in chemical experiments in the following situations:

  1. Children who "cannot be reasonably consulted," such as those that are mentally handicapped or orphaned newborns may be tested on. With permission from the institution or guardian in charge of the individual, the child may be exposed to chemicals for the sake of research.
  2. Parental consent forms are not necessary for testing on children who have been neglected or abused.
  3. Chemical studies on any children outside of the U.S. are acceptable.

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