Asbestos Watch Newsletters
Report to Asbestos Victims
Public Symposium: Asbestos, the Persistent
Paul--We Will Get You and the WLA!!!
Mesothelioma Victims Win Three Million Dollars
CCR Settlement Is No Good for Asbestos Victims
Turner and Newell Sued by Chase Bank
Lloyds of London Threatened by Asbestos
Edith Ford and Volunteers Honored
Manville Trust Still Fights Against Victims
Chrysotile Asbestos is Deadly
Italy Issues Ban On Asbestos
Open Letter to Health Professionals
Brazil Hosts Anti-Asbestos Conference
World Movement to Ban Asbestos Gain
April 8, 1994 by White Lung Association
Report to Asbestos Victims
For Immediate Release:
Update on CCR Class Action Fairness Hearing
The Fairness Hearing to determine if the CCR Class Action settlement
can proceed in court was convened by Judge Reed in Philadelphia
Federal Court, 601 Market St, on February 22, 1994. The Hearing
lasted several weeks and will probably not conclude until June.
CCR includes most of the old Wellington Group.
The court room was filled with asbestos victims who were opposed
to the settlement. Outside of the court hundreds marched in protest.
Over the objections of Paul Safchuck, national president of the
White Lung Association, the Oil, Chemical and Atomic Workers and
others, the court proceeded to hear evidence on why the proposal
should be certified.
Judge Reed seemed to favor Gene Locks, Ron Motley and the asbestos
manufacturers. Gene Locks, Motley and twenty asbestos manufacturers
in the Center for Claims resolution have proposed a settlement for
all people who have disease from their asbestos.
If you did not fill out an "opt out" form before Jan. 24, 1994,
they are proposing a settlement is all that you will ever get. You will
automatically have Mr. Locks or Mr. Motley as your attorney.
The Judge refused let asbestos victims represent themselves or to
allow the White Lung Association officers the right to speak. The
Judge refused to allow "Asbestos Watch" reporters James
Fite or Paul Safchuck access to seating with the other press. Asbestos
victims were harassed by the court officers and forced to clear
the court room several times before the hearing could begin. The
victims were forced to wait in long lines and to go through metal
detectors in the lobby and before going into the court room itself.
Ron Motley gave a very poor presentation to the court as he spoke
on behalf of the deal between himself and the asbestos companies.
He appeared nervous and irritable that his actions were being denounced
by the asbestos victims. This was almost the same speech he presented
when he spoke in favor of the Manville Trust. Motley cloaked his
deal in the name of asbestos victims. Motley also claimed that he
and Gene Locks and the asbestos companies were honorable men whose
fine ethics was in the interest of the asbestos victims. Motley
made two important points that need to be investigated; one point
was that 70% of the compensation money for asbestos victims now
goes to lawyers, experts and court fees. The second point was that
90% of the releases now signed are signed to release the company
of all diseases from asbestos, even if they come later in life.
Fred Baron then spoke against the Motley-Locks-Asbestos Company
deal. Judge Reed was nasty to Baron, but he still had to let Baron
talk as he was the official representative of the Opposition to
the Deal. Baron exposed the facts of the case. This alone proved
the vast unfairness of the settlement. The WLA believes Judge Reed
ignored the constitution and the legal facts and made it clear he
did not care about asbestos victims and merely wanted to rubber
stamp the deal.
Fred Baron brought out charts which explained how the CCR deal was
rotten for the asbestos victims.
| Chart I of Baron Exhibits
|All Filings Against CCR
|Chart II of Baron Exhibits
|Proposed CCR deal (Called Georgine,
after Robert Georgine, President of the AFL-CIO Building Trades
Department, who is cooperating with Motley) will settle this
amount of cases.
|9,500 cases handled in 10 years of CCR agreement.
Average per year is 9,950.
In chart three Baron pointed out that CCR has settled 104,453
claims in the last four and one half years and this has paid out
$1,112,000,000. At the current rate CCR would pay out over three
billion dollars to asbestos victims in the next ten years. 50% of
the CCR Deal will handle less than cases now filed against CCR.
If the deal goes through CCR will not have to pay out more than
1.7 billion dollars. Mr. Fitzpatrick, the Executive Director of
the CCR stated that the asbestos companies wanted this deal because
their goal was to settle future claims as cheaply as they could.
Baron also introduced evidence that the CCR companies would
make over 133 billion in profits during this ten year period and
that the CCR deal will pay out less than 1% of these profits to
asbestos victims. The companies will only pay about 550 million
of their own money, the rest being paid by their insurance companies.
Baron then proved that Motley and Locks have admitted to settling
over 200 million dollars of claims for their clients and that they
will make 71 million dollars for themselves from this deal.
The next chart compared the benefits from the present system
to the CCR deal.
|How many victims can claim benefits
|Average 9,900 year
|What doctor can by used by victim
|only two specialists
|Can victims get a deferral on time to file
|Is there a cap on settlement amounts
|Can victim sue the distributors
|Does victims loss compensation rights
|speed of cases
|by special deal
Over 260,000 people have opted out of this deal. Motley, Locks
and the asbestos companies have made a motion to court to discard
95% of these no votes. The Judge has ruled against the request of
the White Lung Association and others to extend the amount of time
people have to opt out of this settlement.