Bayer-Monsanto Feeling Pressure in Roundup Cancer Cases
Posted on Monday, June 7th, 2021
A federal judge has struck down Bayer-Monsanto’s latest attempt to resolve claims made on behalf of Roundup victims who have yet to be diagnosed with cancer. The $2 billion settlement proposal was an attempt for the company to put a firm dollar sign on the amount they would have to pay for future claims, and did not address the approximately 30,000 claims still pending.
With the settlement denied, Bayer-Monsanto is, no doubt, recognizing that the courts will hold them accountable for the damage they’ve done to tens of thousands of hard-working families. As trials resume, settlement talks are heating up and we are hopeful that the corporation will come to the table with a reasonable settlement offer in coming months.
OnderLaw did not support the future litigation settlement for a number of reasons, including:
- It kept new lawsuits from being filed for four years while the proposed diagnostic and settlement programs were implemented.
- Those who agreed to settle would sign away their rights to file claims for punitive damages or to get compensation for medical monitoring.
- The settlement would have used $55 million to establish a Science Advisory Panel. The objective of this panel would have been, according to the settlement, to examine “specified existing scientific evidence” to determine if Roundup exposure causes NHL in humans. In court, we’ve seen time and again that Bayer-Monsanto has directly or indirectly funded a number of studies that have, to no one’s surprise, found that glyphosate is not linked to cancer.At the same time, there have been countless studies conducted throughout the world that have found strong links between glyphosate and cancer. Those studies have been so compelling that dozens of countries have banned its use altogether, and the World Health Organization has given it the strongest possible classification of “probable carcinogen.”We feel that any science panel established and funded by Bayer-Monsanto would be biased, as they have demonstrated all along. A large chunk of this settlement money would be allocated to paying for biased studies that would be used to help Bayer-Monsanto avoid future accountability for what will no doubt be tens of thousands or more lives destroyed by their products.
- The settlement funded education programs regarding Roundup and NHL. As we have seen with Bayer-Monsanto’s reluctance to even add an adequate warning label outlining the dangers of glyphosate, we feel they have no interest in changing their narrative that glyphosate is “safe” when it comes to educating the hard-working farmers and other agricultural workers who rely on this product to make a living.
- $210 million was to be allocated for diagnostic services. This involves the funding of medical clinics in areas where Roundup is used most. Demographically, these are often migrant and/or socioeconomically challenged rural areas. They would focus, by their own account, on people who are itinerant, who lack exposure to traditional media, and who do not speak English as a first language. Their focus would be, then, on people who likely have limited education and resources, and who likely don’t know their rights.Bayer-Monsanto’s plan was to approach people in a trusted healthcare setting and refer them to class counsel for free legal services (funding for which was established in the settlement but was not included in the $2B total). Bayer-Monsanto would dangle the option of a $5,000 accelerated payment that they could have in their pocket within 30 days to people who sometimes struggle to feed their families in exchange for making their own liabilities go away.Even if people opted for claims program awards, the vast majority would have only received $10K. Only a tiny percentage would get the $200K proposed. This is a blatant effort to stop victims from using the U.S. court system to hold Bayer-Monsanto accountable – a function which the courts were specifically designed to do.
- The $5K accelerated payment is worth mentioning again. If someone is diagnosed with NHL, under the proposal, they would have been offered a $5K payment within 30 days, no questions asked. This amount is absurd and does nothing to compensate people whose livelihoods and health are destroyed by Roundup-related cancer.
- The settlement period was four years long. Roundup users have been diagnosed with NHL for decades. The potential number of future victims is staggering. What would have happened when this settlement money runs out and our parents, our friends, or our children have to hear the words, “You have cancer”?
So long as this product remains on shelves, it is going to continue to destroy lives. This settlement did not adequately compensate future victims, and it did little to hold Bayer-Monsanto accountable for putting profits over the lives of the people who rely on their products for their livelihoods.
OnderLaw continues to push for justice. Though some attorneys have encouraged their clients to settle for smaller amounts, we have stood our ground. We’ve been preparing for an October trial and have built a line-up of world-class experts whom we believe will do an excellent job of explaining to the jury the dangers of glyphosate and how the risk of certain cancers would be greatly reduced, if not eliminated altogether, were it not for glyphosate found in Roundup.