A container of Johnson's baby powder.
A container of Johnson's baby powder.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
  • The National Council of Negro Women is suing Johnson & Johnson over its talc baby powder.
  • The lawsuit says that the company "deceptively" marketed the powder to Black women.
  • There have been 25,000 lawsuits filed in the US over the company's baby powder.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Johnson & Johnson is facing another lawsuit over its talc baby powder.

The National Council of Negro Women filed a lawsuit Tuesday against the company, alleging it "deceptively marketed" the product to Black women while knowing its links to ovarian cancer, the group said.

The lawsuit claims that Johnson & Johnson's baby powder was aggressively marketed to Black women as a product that would "maintain freshness and cleanliness." But, the group says, internal documents from a study conducted in 1968 suggest that the powder contained talc which may have been contaminated with asbestos and that the company knew there was a "carcinogenic nature of talc and the effects of talc use."

"This lawsuit is about the lives of our grandmothers, our mothers, our wives, sisters and daughters — all of whom were cynically targeted by Johnson and Johnson," Attorney Ben Crump said in a press release. "All the while, company executives knew the risk of ovarian cancer from talc."

Baby powder has been a staple product in many Black families' bathing routines for decades. The New York Times first reported the lawsuit.

In a statement, Johnson & Johnson pushed back against claims its products are unsafe and said it has never systematically targeted a community with bad intentions.

"We empathize with anyone suffering from cancer and understand that people are looking for answers. We believe those answers can be better understood through science – and decades of independent scientific testing by medical experts around the world has confirmed that our products are safe, do not contain asbestos, and do not cause cancer."

The company added: "The accusations being made against our company are false, and the idea that our Company would purposefully and systematically target a community with bad intentions is unreasonable and absurd, Johnson's Baby Powder is safe, and our campaigns are multicultural and inclusive. We firmly stand behind the safety of our product and the ways in which we communicate with our customers."

The NCNW hopes to force Johnson & Johnson to take corrective actions "to inform Black women and all other consumers about the risks associated with using the products and their connection to ovarian cancers."

As of January 2021, 25,000 US civil lawsuits had been filed against Johnson & Johnson concerning its baby powder. Earlier this year, Johnson & Johnson announced that it was setting aside nearly $4 billion for litigation expenses in response to these cases.

"This company, through its words and images, told Black women that we were offensive in our natural state and needed to use their products to stay fresh," NCNW executive director Janice Mathis said in a press release. "Generations of Black women believed them and made it our daily practice to use their products in ways that put us at risk of cancer — and we taught our daughters to do the same. Shame on Johnson and Johnson."

Read the original article on Business Insider

Dit artikel is oorspronkelijk verschenen op z24.nl