Enterprise under Fire, Failed to Recall Unsafe Vehicle
As an established and reputable business serving customers for over 50 years, Enterprise Rent-A-Car has appreciated a loyal clientele base for decades. Their seemingly untouchable position has been questioned in recent days as the nation’s largest rental car company has become the target of a petition signed by over 135,000 concerned customers over Enterprise’s lack of corporate responsibility.
A loophole in a surface transportation bill has allowed the company to continue renting recalled automobiles with deadly consequences. Raechel, 24, and Jacqueline Houck, 20, were killed in 2004 when a fatal accident was caused by leaking power-steering fluid in their Enterprise rental car, causing the car to burst into flames and crash into a semi tractor-trailer.
The PT Cruiser they were driving had recently been recalled but a long-standing law – effectively forcing manufacturers and new car dealerships to recall cars that have been deemed a safety risk – fails to include rental car companies. An amendment to close this loophole, supported by Senators Charles Schumer and Barbara Boxer, prompted a backlash from Enterprise, who also owns the Alamo and National Car Rental brands. Representatives retorted, calling the proposed regulation “unnecessary.”
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The mother of the young women killed in the tragic accident, Cally Houck, began a petition with Change.com which quickly gathered more than 100,000 votes of support Thursday, the first day it was posted. Houck posted the petition after USA Today reported Hertz had agreed to support the measure, while Enterprise refused to compromise their position.
The overwhelming support for the petition quickly gained national attention with countless statements posted by previous Enterprise renters expressing their outrage and frustration over the deaths. Enterprise Holdings released a statement Friday saying, “... A growing number of people, including our customers and business partners, clearly want more assurance on this critical issue. We hear them – and what we’ve heard has caused us to rethink our stance.”
Although Houk called Enterprise’s statement a “step in the right direction,” she is calling for the corporation’s full cooperation and the petition continues to gather signatures. As posted on Change.com, Houk’s responded, “We will continue to press onward until Enterprise announces full and unconditional support for the Hertz agreement.”
G7 Summit guide: What it is and what leaders hope to achieve
Unless you’ve had your head buried in the sand, you’ll have seen the term ‘G7’ plastered all over the Internet this week. We’re going to give you the skinny on exactly what the G7 is and what its purpose on this planet is ─ and whether it’s a good or a bad collaboration.
Who are the G7?
The Group of Seven, or ‘G7’, may sound like a collective of pirate lords from a certain Disney smash-hit, but in reality, it’s a group of the world’s seven largest “advanced” economies ─ the powerhouses of the world, if you like.
The merry band comprises:
- The United Kingdom
- The United States
Historically, Russia was a member of the then-called ‘G8’ but found itself excluded after their ever-so-slightly illegal takeover of Crimea back in 2014.
Since 1977, the European Union has also been involved in some capacity with the G7 Summit. The Union is not recognised as an official member, but gradually, as with all Europe-linked affairs, the Union has integrated itself into the conversation and is now included in all political discussions on the annual summit agenda.
When was the ‘G’ formed?
Back in 1975, when the world was reeling from its very first oil shock and the subsequent financial fallout that came with it, the heads of state and government from six of the leading industrial countries had a face-to-face meeting at the Chateau de Rambouillet to discuss the global economy, its trajectory, and what they could do to address the economic turmoil that reared its ugly head throughout the 70s.
Why does the G7 exist?
At this very first summit ─ the ‘G6’ summit ─, the leaders adopted a 15-point communiqué, the Declaration of Rambouillet, and agreed to continuously meet once a year moving forward to address the problems of the day, with a rotating Presidency. One year later, Canada was welcomed into the fold, and the ‘G6’ became seven and has remained so ever since ─ Russia’s inclusion and exclusion not counted.
The group, as previously mentioned, was born in the looming shadow of a financial crisis, but its purpose is more significant than just economics. When leaders from the group meet, they discuss and exchange ideas on a broad range of issues, including injustice around the world, geopolitical matters, security, and sustainability.
It’s worth noting that, while the G7 may be made up of mighty nations, the bloc is an informal one. So, although it is considered an important annual event, declarations made during the summit are not legally binding. That said, they are still very influential and worth taking note of because it indicates the ambitions and outlines the initiatives of these particularly prominent leading nations.
Where is the 2021 G7 summit?
This year, the summit will be held in the United Kingdom deep in the southwest of England, with Prime Minister Boris Johnson hosting his contemporaries in the quaint Cornish resort of Carbis Bay near St Ives in Cornwall.
What will be discussed this year?
After almost two years of remote communication, this will be the first in-person G7 summit since the novel Coronavirus first took hold of the globe, and Britain wants “leaders to seize the opportunity to build back better from coronavirus, uniting to make the future fairer, greener, and more prosperous.”
The three-day summit, running from Friday to Sunday, will see the seven leaders discussing a whole host of shared challenges, ranging from the pandemic and vaccine development and distribution to the ongoing global fight against climate change through the implementation of sustainable norms and values.
According to the UK government, the attendees will also be taking a look at “ensuring that people everywhere can benefit from open trade, technological change, and scientific discovery.”