Friday, December 03, 2004
Corporate of the Week
GSK - for running forced trials on kids born HIV positive:
"...GlaxoSmithKline will be accused this week of backing drug trials in the US in which underprivileged children were forced to test Aids treatments against their will.
The trials have been taking place in New York under the auspices of the Administration for Children's Services, the body that looks after the welfare of children in New York City.
...the ACS is deemed to be the legal guardian for many HIV-positive children. According to a BBC2 documentary, Guinea Pig Kids, to be shown on Tuesday, the ACS has forced children to be involved in these trials, removing them from foster homes if the foster parent did not comply and even physically making the children take the drugs.
"...At Incarnation, if a child refused to take the medicines offered, he or she was force-fed through a peg-tube inserted into the stomach.
Over 23,000 of the city's children are either in foster care or independent homes run mostly by religious organisations on behalf of the local authorities and almost 99% are black or hispanic."
Needless to say, this is extremely disturbing. It would be nice if the beancounters that made this happen faced consequences - but I think it would be even nicer if GSK took a nice fat hit to shareholder value. It might be a good idea to short GSK for the next week or so.
Another point to note - this is another nice data point to support everyone's death of big private media hypothesis (since the Beeb broke the story, not the NYT or the Post).