‘Dont Dow It’ Action with Amnesty International

Amnesty International has mailed all of its members asking them to take part in their ‘Don’t Dow It’ campaign, opposing Dow’s olympic sponsorship, and we hope that you may be keen to join in with this action.

The idea is either to write to Lord Coe, or to Tweet him, or both! The hope, for the Tweeters, is to get #DontDowIt trending. For those of you that like to Tweet then here is the suggested Tweet: Dear @sebcoe, stop defending Dow Chemical – don’t pollute London2012 with their toxic legacy #DontDowIt

Or, if you prefer to write a letter, here’s the correct address: Lord Coe, Chair LOCOG, One Churchill Place, Canary Wharf, London E14 5LN

Amnesty have prepared a letter, with some demands, which you may wish to use (see below). Alternatively please write your own letter and explain how you, personally, feel about this.

Dear Lord Coe,

We are writing to ask you to take action that will address LOCOG’s relationship with the Dow Chemical Corporation in the context of Bhopal. We are aware that LOCOG’s partnership with Dow has tainted the London Olympics by association with one of the most egregious cases of corporate negligence in recent history. It has also undermined the victims and their families in their quest for justice.

We believe there are concrete and feasible actions that can be taken that would go a long way towards reversing the damage caused by LOCOG’s decision to enter into a contractual relationship with Dow to provide the wrap for the Olympic Stadium. In our view, such actions would have the effect of restoring much of the damage to LOCOG’s reputation arising from this partnership, and would offer comfort to the victims and survivors who clearly feel a deep sense of injustice and grievance.

The damage to LOCOG arises not just from its deficient procurement process, but also adoption of Dow’s position of distancing the company from responsibility for the events of Bhopal 1984 and for subsequent contamination of the area. In doing so, LOCOG has been taking sides with Dow over outstanding claims against the company that are contested and unresolved. By appearing to make the presumption of Dow’s innocence, LOCOG is in effect declaring the victims’ case to be unfounded.

We are calling on LOCOG to take the following measures to alleviate the situation:

1) Acknowledge that deficiencies in its ethical guidelines existed and, had those deficiencies not existed, the decision on whether to procure the wrap from Dow would have been different;
2) Retract public statements it has made affirming that Dow is not responsible for the events of the 1984 Bhopal Disaster and subsequent contamination;
3) Apologise to the Bhopal survivors for the damage such statements caused them;
4) Revise its ethical policy to develop more rigorous criteria for assessing human rights issues.
5) Recommend to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and to future organisers of Olympic Games that explicit policies are adopted to ensure that human rights are respected with regard to the impacts of such events, including sponsorship arrangements.

I would urge you to give serious consideration to this and would be grateful if you will let me know whether you are prepared to take a fresh path on Dow.

For more information on the Dont Dow It campaign click here

If you want to get more involved then do get in touch here

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We believe Dow must finally accept responsibility for Bhopal. Until then, The Bhopal Medical Appeal funds two award-winning clinics in the city. Both offer free, first-class care to victims of the gas disaster or the ongoing water contamination. The survivors have nowhere else left to turn – please help if you can.