Sean Tuffnell, Susan G. Komen® Director of Communications writes, “Susan G. Komen is proud of our 22-year partnership with Bank of America. They have a significant impact on the breast cancer fight, having raised more than $10 million in support of our advocacy, research, and patient care and support services.”
The big bad bank pours billions into the fossil fuel industry that causes cancer and destroys resources necessary for the survival of our communities in the process. Environmental racism is inherent to the fossil fuel industry. And just as breast cancer disproportionately impacts BIPOC communities, so too do fossil fuels disproportionately harm, displace, and kill BIPOC communities. And in an effort to convince the world how much they care about women and breast cancer, Bank of America gives millions to Susan G. Komen® who claims to want to end breast cancer. So, it’s okay to fund projects and practices that kill us, as long as Komen receives funds for programs that raise awareness for another thing that kills us? Hmm… are you as confused as we are?
And Susan G. Komen® is “proud” of this partnership?
Yeah, no shit Bank of America has donated to breast cancer advocacy, research, and patient services by partnering with Komen for the last 22 years. That’s not the issue here. The issue is that while Bank of America makes their PR goals by throwing scraps to Susan G. Komen®, the bank is funneling literally billions into an industry that causes breast cancer.
Donating $10 million to breast cancer advocacy, research, and patient services over the course of 22-years pales in comparison to the $42.1 billion that Bank of America poured into fossil fuel funding in 2020 alone. To be exact, 10 million over 22 years is .02% of what they put into fossil fuel funding just last year.
Komen’s response is clear. As long as Bank of America funds their programming, we’re supposed to cheer for their philanthropy. Yay! More “awareness!” If you are determined to cheer, do it quick. The fossil fuel industry is a primary driver of climate chaos and at this rate, we won’t be around much longer.
Bank of America’s cause marketing partnership with Susan G. Komen® is not the corporate absolution Susan G. Komen® wants it to be. It’s a diversion from the climate chaos and public health crises its fossil-fueled portfolio intensifies, and that Komen actively downplays with the warm and fuzzies it imparts through pink ribbon branding.
If you’re as enraged by this rose-colored response as we are, add your voice now. Use our advocacy tool and tell Komen that this hypocritical partnership must end today.