23 August 2015
Waltham Forest and Redbridge Green Party held a busy stall outside Leytonstone tube on Saturday August 22nd from 11am to 1pm, informing people of the dangers of TTIP, a new and damaging US/EU trade agreement, and collecting signatures for a European Citizens’ Initiative petition against it. The response was very positive with a lot of people keen to learn more when informed of the threat of TTIP. A large number of leaflets were distributed and a number of people signed the petition.
August 22nd was also a National Day of Action against TTIP organised by campaign group 38 Degrees, many of whom were also campaigning in the Leytonstone area.
The trade agreement, currently being negotiated in secret, is one of the most far-reaching free trade and investment treaties - and constitutes a fundamental threat to our democracy. TTIP involves the transfer of power from governments to transnational corporations, removing regulatory barriers, including those that protect our environment, health, animal welfare and public services. Once the agreement comes into force, corporations will have the power to sue the governments of countries whose regulatory framework can be demonstrated to place restrictions on the free development of their business interests. Those regulations most likely to be targeted will include food safety, workers’ rights and environmental protection – all regulations that protect our society. TTIP also poses a threat to public services such as the NHS as it will force privatisation.
To date, the European Citizens’ Initiative petition has already gathered nearly two and a half million signatures.
“When people find out about TTIP, they are concerned about the threats it poses to health, environment, food safety, the NHS, animal welfare and our democracy,” said Mark Dawes of Waltham Forest and Redbridge Green Party. “It is not surprising that it is being negotiated in secret, as the majority of people oppose it when the facts are known,” he added.