Debating trade and consumer protection in Brussels today

I am in Brussels today debating consumer protection and the proposed US-European trade treaty known as the TransAtlantic Trade and Investment Partnership or TTIP. Today's public event, and a second public meeting tomorrow (Wednesday with live webstream 9am-noon DC time) comparing the CFPB to its European counterparts, are sponsored by the PIRG-backed TransAtlantic Consumer Dialogue.

 
Today in Brussels I am part of a public forum organized by the PIRG-backed TransAtlantic Consumer Dialogue to debate the impact of the pending TTIP trade agreement on consumer and environmental protection with senior US and European Union officials, along with academics and business leaders. A key item is whether the treaty will include a provision called Investor-State-Dispute-Resolution-System (ISDS) giving corporations the right to challenge health and safety laws as trade barriers, in secretive tribunals outside the court system. Also, tomorrow I speak at a followup event comparing the CFPB to European financial regulatory models. (Apologies, some technical difficulty is requiring me to add the links directly).
 
The event today is called “TACD MultiStakeholder Forum: The precautionary principle in TTIP: Trade barrier or essential for consumer protection? http://tacd.org/event/2016-annual-forum/
TACD’s view is that US consumers are like European consumers. We all want privacy (but European law is better and European enforcement against Google et al is better), we all want chemical safety (but European law is better) and we all want safe food free of antibiotics and genetically-modified organisms (European laws on GMO labeling are ubiquitous across the continent and a few countries fully ban GMOs; we have only a VPIRG-backed Vermont law due to take effect but under attack in Congress).Archive of TACD statements on TTIP: http://tacd.org/topics/policy/ttip/   

Two issues dominate our concerns about the treaty. The first is an elephant in the room and is known as Investor-State-Dispute-Resolution-System (ISDS). The second is whether the safety-first “precautionary principle” that applies across all European health and safety regulation and most, but not all US rules, will be undercut by the treaty.  

 Why ISDS Should Not Be Included In Any Trade Treaty: ISD