- International consumer group CASPIAN (Consumers Against
Supermarket Privacy Invasion and Numbering) will hold a march and prayer
vigil this Saturday to protest a plan to inject VeriChip microchip implants
into 200 Alzheimer's Community Care, Inc, patients. The interfaith event
will be held outside of the Alzheimer's Community Care facility in West
Palm Beach, Florida.
- Planners hope the event will enlighten caregivers to
the serious medical and societal downsides of the VeriChip and encourage
them to rethink using elderly dementia patients as research subjects to
test the controversial product.
- The VeriChip implant is a glass encapsulated RFID tag
that is injected into the flesh to uniquely number and identify people.
The tag can be read by radio waves from a few inches away. The device is
being marketed as a way to link to medical records, access secure areas,
and serve as a payment instrument when associated with a credit card or
- Although the VeriChip Corporation emphasizes that its
chip should always be strictly voluntary, many question the ethics of conducting
medical research on mentally impaired individuals. Alzheimer's patients
cannot understand the risks associated with being microchipped and therefore
cannot give fully informed consent. According to the FDA, risks associated
with the VeriChip include MRI incompatibility, electrical hazard, and adverse
tissue reaction, to name just a few.
- "We have an obligation to protect vulnerable members
of society from being used as guinea pigs for controversial medical research,"
said CASPIAN founder and director Dr. Katherine Albrecht. "The vast
majority of Americans object to human microchipping, and it is likely these
Alzheimer's patients would feel the same way if they could speak for themselves."
- Albrecht compared the large-scale chip implantation plans
to an assembly line that would render elderly patients scannable "like
bar-coded packages of meat," adding that the societal implications
of such a move would be chilling.
- "Whether Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu,
B'hai, or atheist, no one likes the idea of being forcibly tracked and
monitored by implantable technology without their express consent,"
- VeriChip Corporation has been very unsuccessful in its
bids to chip humans to date. In fact, only about 250 individuals, most
associated with the company in some way, have been chipped since the VeriChip
was first brought to market in 2001. The Alzheimer's study would boost
that number to over 650, a move possibly designed to help reassure investors
in the beleaguered company. VeriChip posted a $3 million loss last quarter,
the latest in a steady series of multi-million dollar losses.
- Event details:
- March and Interfaith Prayer Vigil to Protect the Vulnerable
Saturday, May 12, 2007 West Palm Beach, Florida 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM * Pre-Event
Presentation and Book Signing by RFID Expert Dr. Katherine Albrecht 10:00-12:00
* Peaceful March to Alzheimer's Community Care and Prayer Vigil 1:00-3:00
- For more information, visit http://www.AntiChips.com.
- ABOUT CASPIAN
- CASPIAN (Consumers Against Supermarket Privacy Invasion
and Numbering) is a grass-roots consumer group fighting retail surveillance
schemes since 1999 and irresponsible RFID use since 2002. With thousands
of members in all 50 U.S. states and over 30 countries worldwide, CASPIAN
seeks to educate consumers about marketing strategies that invade their
privacy and encourage privacy-conscious shopping habits across the retail
- FOR MORE INFORMATION OR TO ARRANGE AN INTERVIEW, PLEASE
CONTACT: Katherine Albrecht (email@example.com) 877-287-5854 ext. 1 or Liz
McIntyre (firstname.lastname@example.org) 877-287-5854 ext. 2
- See: http://www.spychips.com