ACORN takes on Sherwin-Williams and Poison Paint

Report Documents Sherwin-Williams Culpability for Lead Paint Poisoning and other Environmental Abuses. ACORN Urges more City and State Governments to File Suit.

ACORN, the Associated of Community Organizations for Reform Now, has started a campaign in response to Sherwin-Williams’ negligence regarding lead-based paint. The following is a blurb about the action being taken. More information about the issue and how to get involved is available at ACORN’s website.

On Wednesday, June 28th the community group ACORN released a study,”Sherwin-Williams: Covering Our Communities with Toxics,” and called on local and state governments to file lawsuits and take other action, including the divestment of public pension funds, to force the company to help fund leadpaint clean-up.

“For decades Sherwin-Williams knowingly covered our country’s homes in poison paint,” said ACORN President Maude Hurd. “Now it is time for Sherwin-Williams to own up to its responsibility and use some its profits to help the hundreds of thousands children affected by lead poisoning.”

ACORN’s report documents how Sherwin-Williams knew in the early 1900’s that lead-based paint was poisonous, and how they acted to cover up this fact and deceive consumers. The report further details much more recent cases ofSherwin Williams’ environmental abuse, such as the company’s efforts to thwart state regulations limiting certain paint emissions (VOCs, or Volatile Organic Compounds) that contribute to the ozone and smog, asthma and respiratory ailments.

In the wake of Rhode Island’s successful suit earlier this year against Sherwin-Williams and two other paint manufacturers, ACORN leaders are calling on their city and state officials to sue the company in order to secure needed funding to deal with the lead paint problem. Rhode Island is expected to receive over $1 billion in damages for this purpose. Despite the fact that lead-based paint was banned in 1978, some 25 million properties in the United States are believed to still have lead paint hazards and over 300,000 children a year under the age of 5 suffer from lead poisoning.
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