ColorOfChange Applauds Procter & Gamble's Decision to End its Membership in ALEC

More Than A Dozen Companies Have Left the American Legislative Exchange Council

April 23, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Timothy K. Rusch
tim@fitzgibbonmedia.com

New York, NY - The following is a statement from ColorOfChange.org Executive Director Rashad Robinson:

"In deciding to part ways with ALEC, Procter & Gamble has acknowledged that it can't in good conscience market products to Black communities while at the same time handing over customers' dollars to a right-wing think tank that has worked to suppress the Black vote.

"On Friday afternoon, we learned that P&G began reviewing its membership in January and recently decided not to rejoin ALEC in 2012. External Relations Manager Elizabeth Ratchford told us via email that, 'Decisions about which memberships we retain are guided by budgetary considerations, value to the business and engagement on issues core to our ability to compete in the marketplace.' The multinational corporation made the determination that ALEC does not help P&G compete for consumers' loyalty and support.

"Unfortunately, Johnson & Johnson -- a P&G competitor and maker of products including Listerine, Visine, and Band-Aid -- has not come to the same decision, despite having heard from hundreds of ColorOfChange members and allies.

With Friday's announcement, Procter & Gamble becomes the 13th company to drop ALEC. The company joins Yum! Brands, McDonald's, Wendy's, Mars Inc., Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, Kraft Foods, Intuit, Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, Reed Elsevier (owner of LexisNexis and publisher of science and health information), American Traffic Solutions and Arizona Public Service.

"We want to thank these companies for making the right decision, and we want to thank ColorOfChange members and our partners. We continue to call on all major corporations to stop funding ALEC given its involvement in voter suppression and its work pushing policies designed to benefit rich and powerful corporations at the expense of people of color, workers, and the environment. Our members and allied groups are prepared to hold accountable companies that continue to associate themselves with an organization that has attacked voting rights, causing irreparable damage nationwide."

The tragedy of Trayvon Martin's death – and the so-called "stand your ground" law that helped his killer evade arrest for more than a month – is another example of how ALEC's agenda is dangerous for people of color. The NRA and ALEC exported Florida's “stand your ground” law to more than 20 states across the country, jeopardizing the safety of Americans nationwide.

ColorOfChange members signed a earlier petition targeting ALEC’s corporate partners for their role in suppressing Black votes. The petition can be found here: http://www.colorofchange.org/campaign/alec/

In addition, more than 170,000 ColorOfChange members have signed the petition calling on the Department of Justice to take over the Trayvon Martin case, arrest Martin's killer, and launch an independent investigation into the Sanford police department's mishandling of the case. The petition can be found here:
http://www.colorofchange.org/campaign/trayvon/

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With more than 800,000 members, ColorOfChange.org is the nation’s largest African-American online civil rights organization.

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