Due to the continued secrecy around the Trans-Atlantic Trade Investment Partnership (TTIP) many around the UK do not yet understand how dangerous such a deal is and the ways in which it would impact them.
A day of action took place yesterday and representatives of the Pirate Party attended the 38 Degrees Anti-TTIP demonstration in Salford & Eccles to drag these negotiations into the light.
We already know that TTIP proposes to "harmonise" (aka deregulate) Europe to fit in with the USA. An every-day effect we would see is in our food. In Europe any substance placed into our food has to be proven to be safe for human consumption. The American model is that it has to be proven to be harmful before anyone can be forced to remove it.
Now take this practice and apply it to your greater environment. The EU regulations (REACH) demands that a substance be proven to be safe before it can be used in the environment, while in the USA they take the opposite approach. This means toxic substances could be released onto EU soil as part of TTIP.
George Walkden, Pirate Party Nominations Officer, who attended the event, said:
"TTIP is the antithesis of everything the Pirate Party stands for. The way the negotiations are being conducted is an insult to transparency. The mechanism of investor-state dispute settlements (ISDS), which would allow private companies to sue elected governments for passing legislation they don't like, is an insult to democracy. We need to fight this."
David Elston, Pirate Party Deputy Leader and TTIP Spokesperson, said:
"In the simplest terms, TTIP serves as a prime example of how Government should not operate.
We're denied access to information on a deal that would fundamentally affect the life of everyone accross the EU so that private corporations can make money. Anti-TTIP demonstrations have been ripe since its announcement yet it still isn't being dropped."