Posted On: July 27, 2010 by Steven J. Malman

Ex-Motorola Workers’ Cook County Injury Lawsuit Claims Their Children’s Birth Defects were Caused by Toxic Substances Used to Make Products

71 plaintiffs have filed a Cook County, Illinois injury lawsuit seeking damages from former employer Motorola for their children’s birth defects. They are claiming that because they worked with toxic substances during the manufacture of certain Motorola products, their children were born with serious defects.

The former employees contend that the Schaumburg-based company knew that the chemicals used to manufacture computer chips and semiconductors were toxic and could cause people who were exposed to them to have babies with birth defects. The children of the plaintiffs are suffering from different conditions, including spina bifida, cerebral palsy, brain malformations, autism, sterility, skeletal deformities, and physical deformities. Two of the children were missing an ear when they were born. Some of the workers’ kids are now adults.

The children’s parents worked at different Motorola facilities between 1965 and 2007. The plaintiffs are accusing the defendant of knowing (or if not, then they should have known) that reproductive harm was a possible side effect of working with the dangerous substances. They also contend that the company did not provide protective gear for them when they were in what were supposed to be sterile “clean rooms” that ended up circulating the allegedly toxic substances through the air.

The plaintiffs say that in 1986, there was already a study by Johns Hopkins University and IBM that reported that solvents, chemicals, metals, and other compounds can have a dangerous effect on reproduction. Different chemical manufacturers, occupational safety institutes, and trade associations had also warned that working with or around certain products may prove harmful. The plaintiffs are seeking unspecified damages from Motorola.

Employers are supposed to take all necessary steps to protect workers from injury or death while they are doing their jobs. That said, regardless of who was at fault, workers are usually entitled to Illinois workers’ compensation. Even if you are no longer working for your employer, there still may be legal options that you can pursue if you later discover that your injuries or illness occurred because of your former job. If you believe that your child or another family was injured because they were exposed through hazardous substances through you because of your job, you and/or their may have grounds for Cook County personal injury recovery.

Ex-workers' lawsuit blames Motorola for birth defects, News-Sun, July 25, 2010

Ex-workers sue Motorola over kids’ birth defects, Chicago Breaking News, July 26, 2010

Related Web Resource:
Toxic and Hazardous Substances, Occupational Safety and Health Administration

Corporate Responsibility, Motorola

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