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Blog Post | Transportation

Owning Fewer Cars Isn’t Just For Millennials | Sean Doyle

New transportation options are making it easier for people to use transit more, own fewer cars, and even save money on transportation.

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News Release | MASSPIRG | Consumer Protection, Food

Big Win For Consumers’ Right-to-Know

Today, the U.S. Senate failed to pass their version of the DARK Act (Denying Americans the Right to Know), which would have kept consumers in the dark about what's in the food they eat, falling 12 votes short of the 60 required to continue the debate. 

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Blog Post | Transportation

MBTA to Riders: TAKE A HIKE | Kirstie Pecci

The MBTA's Fiscal Management and Control Board votes to raise fares by almost 10%. Citizens express outrage by taking over the meeting.

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News Release | MASSPIRG | Consumer Protection, Food

GMO Labeling Bill Takes Important Step Toward Passage

A bill that would give consumers clear labels for GMO food ingredients today cleared the Massachusetts legislature’s Joint Committee on Environment, Natural Resources & Agriculture, a critical first step on the road to passage. H. 3242, The Genetic Engineering Transparency Food Labeling Act, would require clear labeling of food products that contain genetically engineered ingredients (commonly called “GMOs”). 

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Blog Post | Financial Reform

We oppose latest effort to weaken CFPB, other bank regulators | Ed Mierzwinski

Today, the House Financial Services Committee holds its latest cattle-call markup of a package of industry-backed bills designed to weaken consumer, taxpayer, depositor and investor protections. We've signed a letter opposing the so-called TAILOR (Taking Account of Institutions with Low Operation Risk) Act, which piles redundant requirements onto the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and other regulators to do what they already do by existing law--treat small banks and credit unions differently than mega-banks. Also, the PIRG-backed Americans for Financial Reform sent up a letter opposing the TAILOR Act and 6 more of the 10 bills on the agenda because they are designed to weaken consumer, taxpayer, depositor and investor protections.

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Hank Investigates: Excise Tax Bill Errors

MASSPIRG's Deirdre Cummings was interviewed on Channel 7 News to discuss excise tax bills errors by the Department of Transportation

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News Release | MASSPIRG | Public Health, Consumer Protection, Health Care

Some Good, Some Bad in Obama Executive Order on Protecting Antibiotics

New executive order on antibiotics takes several important steps necessary to control the spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, it misses the opportunity to call for critical reforms in the agricultural sector that are essential to protect public health. 

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News Release | U.S. PIRG | Public Health

Some Good, Some Bad in Obama Executive Order on Protecting Antibiotics

Today, President Barack Obama issued an Executive Order – Combating Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria. While the order takes several important steps necessary to control the spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, it misses the opportunity to call for critical reforms in the agricultural sector that are essential to protect public health.

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News Release | MASSPIRG | Democracy

Statement of Janet Domenitz on today’s United States Senate vote on the constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United

“Today’s vote in the U. S. Senate was a milestone in the fight to reclaim our democracy. The 2010 Citizens United decision unleashed a tide of big money from mega-donors and super PACs into our elections, and it has threatened to drown out the voices of ordinary Americans..."

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News Release | MASSPIRG Education Fund | Health Care

Group Calls on FDA to Protect Public Health by Regulating Antibiotic Use at Factory Farms

As outlined in our new report entitled Weak Medicine:  Why the FDA's New Guidelines Are Inadequate To Curb Antibiotic Resistance and Protect Public Health.  Guidelines issued by FDA last year lack the restrictions necessary to fully combat the increase in antibiotic-resistant bacteria documented by world health experts.

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The Failure Of Cable Deregulation

The Telecommunications Act of 1996 restructured the entire telecommunications industry and left virtually all cable subscribers without protection from unrestricted rate hikes.

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Who's Watching The Watchdogs?

Conflicts of interest and lack of independent funding have doomed both the national and state level accounting oversight systems in the United States. The state accounting boards and the network of overlapping, mostly self-regulatory federal accounting overseers act as classic regulators, serving management instead of serving investors and taxpayers.

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Deflate Your Rate

At the end of the year 2000, U.S. households were accruing interest on $574 billion of revolving credit card debt, or debt carried over to the next month rather than paid off entirely.

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Report | Solid Waste

Where There's Smoking, There's Fire

Across the nation, over 1,000 people are killed and 3,000 injured as a result of cigarette fires each year. These fires cause more than $400 million in property damage. In Massachusetts alone in 2000, 1,280 fires were attributed to cigarettes. Those fires killed 17 people, injured 81 civilians, and wounded 61 firefighters in the line of duty. Insurers and property owners lost over $9.3 million due to the same blazes. Despite igniting 5% of the 24,931 reported fires in 2000, cigarette fires killed 17 civilians, or 22% of all civilian fires deaths

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Blog Post | Financial Reform

CFPB to announces overdraft fee investigation, unveiling "penalty box" disclosure, possibly ending $39 lattes.Ed MierzwinskiElizabeth Weyant

At a news conference in NYC today, Director Richard Cordray of the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) will announce a major investigation of bank overdraft fee practices and propose a model "penalty box" disclosure to appear on bank statements. The investigation could end the $39 latte-- $4 bucks for the coffee, $35 for the debit card overdraft fee.

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Blog Post | Consumer Protection

Testimony Opposing SB 548 An Act Relative to Manufacturer Rebates and Discount Programs | Deirdre Cummings

MASSPIRG strongly opposes SB 548 An Act Relative to Manufacturer Rebates and Discount Programs which will increase cost of health care by repealing the current prohibition on the drug industry marketing tactic, rx co-pay coupons, designed to increase the use of higher cost, more profitable, brand name drugs. 

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Blog Post | Democracy

In Support of An Act Relative to Accountability for Corporate Political Spending | Janet Domenitz

We sorely need this bill as result of a terrible Supreme Court decision last year. The decision in Citizens United v. FEC afforded already powerful corporate interests even greater influence in our elections. In that decision, five of the nine justices decided to sweep away decades of legal precedent and protections which served to uphold the integrity of our elections process. An Act Relative to Accountability for Corporate Political Spending is a straightforward and important response to this ‘deform’.

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Blog Post | Democracy

In favor of An Act Relative to Disclosure of Political Spending, SB 304 | Janet Domenitz

Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis once said, “Sunlight is the best disinfectant.” He was referring, of course, not to household cleaning practices but to the health of our democracy. Justice Brandeis believed passionately in open and accountable government.

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Blog Post | Consumer Protection

Testimony in Favor of In favor of An Act Banning the Use of Socio-Economic Factors For Insurance Underwriting and Rating of Motor Vehicle Liability Insurance | Deirdre Cummings

We know for example that many of the auto insurance discounts currently being offered today are in fact, proxies for prohibited rating factors. If the regulations prohibit them, then we ought not to allow them to be used through the back door called “discounts.” The public believes auto insurance should be based on driving record and we are here to make sure this is reflected in policy.

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Defend the CFPB

Tell your senators to oppose the “Financial CHOICE Act,” which would gut Wall Street reforms and destroy the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau as we know it.

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