Protests against Olympic Sponsors held in Seoul, South Korea
Aug 2 2012 by Jade van Drie-Brown
With the Olympic spirit held high in London, the Corporate Social Responsibility of Olympic sponsors, Dow and Samsung, should held accountable in India and Korea say ACCEH.
Campaigners in Seoul, South Korea, have started a 9-day-long protest against Olympic sponsors Dow Chemical and Samsung Electronics. The demonstration will continue until the end of the London 2012 Olympic Games. The protestors, from the Asian Citizen’s Center for Environment and Health (ACCEH) are calling for the companies to review their corporate social responsibility duties in relation to the ongoing disaster in Bhopal (Dow) and workers rights in Korea (Samsung).
The Asian Citizen’s Center for Environment and Health (ACCEH) said:
“The 30th Summer Olympic opening ceremony was launched in London in the evening of July 27 2012. We notice that this years Olympics are held in the middle of the serious global climate change and threatened world peace with conflicts in the Middle East, Africa and other places around the world. We wish that all the Olympic players can display their sportsmanship by obeying the rules of honest competitions, so we can praise the winners and encourage all other participants.
Here we have to point out that with this years London Olympic Games, Dow Chemical and Samsung Electronics, the two main Olympic sponsors, are busy ‘greenwashing’ their image, while simply ignoring their duties of corporate social responsibility.
Dow Chemical took over Union Carbide, the American pesticide producer responsible for the 1984 Bhopal disaster in India. But Dow has refused any responsibility for the disaster and its continuing legacy in Bhopal. Approximately 150,000 people are still suffering from chronic diseases, 50,000 people of them are in critical conditions. More than 25,000 people have died so far. The factory site of the Bhopal disaster has been abandoned with no clean up or remediation over 27 years later. Professor PAEK Domyung of Seoul National University and director CHOI Yeyong of Asian Citizen’s Center for Environment and Health visited Bhopal in November 2011. They found the ground water has been contaminated by the leftover chemicals and toxins still at the factory site, and many residents have been continuously affected from the colossal environment pollution. In Bhopal, activists and victims have been calling for Dow to be dropped as a sponsor from the 2012 Olympic Games. They have organized an international campaign demanding Dow respect their corporate social responsibility duties if they want to be legitimate and faithful sponsors of 2012 London Olympics.
Samsung Electronics, the multinational company and top selling global cell phone manufacturer, is also one of main sponsors of the London Olympics. Samsung allows no union activity for its workers in Korea and is blamed for incurring occupational diseases to its 146 former employees, such as leukaemia, non-Hodgkin lymphoma etc. This was followed by manipulating their occupational relationships in court, with their mercenaries poised as lawyers and scientists. Due to this problem, Samsung have been voted as the third worst company in the world by global citizens, and the academic journal the International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health (IJOEH), published a Samsung issue bringing the company’s atrocities to light.
As sponsors of such a global sports event, Dow and Samsung should fulfil their sincere corporate social responsibilities, not as just one of their usual business activities. Here we urge Dow and Samsung to face honestly and sincerely their corporate social responsibility”.
You can visit the website for The Asian Citizen’s Center for Environment and Health here
Tags: ACCEH, Asian Citizen’s Center for Environment and Health, Bhopal gas tragedy, CHOI Yeyong, Corporate Social Responsibility, DOW Chemical, Greenwashing, International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health (IJOEH), Olympic campaigners, olympic sponsorship, PAEK Domyung of Seoul National University, Samsung Electronics, Seoul South Korea, union carbide