Category Archives: blog

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Toxic Time is Up! We Delivered Nearly 32,000 Signatures Demanding an End to Pinkwashing

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By Karuna Jaggar, Executive Director

Everyone inside Boxer office 3

BCAction staff and members deliver nearly 32,000 signatures to Senator Barbara Boxer. Thank you for joining us in demanding strong regulation of toxic chemicals that harm our health.

In just one month nearly 32,000 people from across the country signed our Toxic Time is Up petition. That’s more than 1,000 people per day during October who joined together to demand an end to pinkwashing by removing cancer-causing chemicals from our daily lives. Read More »

We Can’t Waste Another October: End Pinkwashing and Stop Cancer Before It Starts

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karuna2By Karuna Jaggar, Executive Director

We are more than halfway through October and pink ribbon products abound. Even the bottle cap for a non-breast cancer prescription from Walgreens comes with a pink ribbon on it. Each year, my outrage grows over companies that put pink ribbons on absolutely anything in the name of breast cancer, and this year here they are again: cleaning agents, groceries, toilet paper, office supplies, beauty products, apparel, alcohol. You name it; odds are you can find a pink ribbon option. Read More »

Would You Like Some Breast Cancer With Your Purchase?

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Tania KatanBy Tania Katan, Author of My One Night Stand With Cancer, comedic performer, and proud BCAction member

“Would you like a dose of breast cancer with your purchase ma’am?”

This sounds like an absurd question, but that’s exactly what we’re being asked every time we buy perfume, plastic water bottles, fried chicken, and other pink products stamped with the iconic pink ribbon.

My name is Tania Katan, and this October, I signed the Toxic Time Is Up petition because I believe eliminating toxins from our daily lives will make a huge difference to stop cancer before it starts.

As someone who has endured breast cancer two times, I am outraged that all too often, the pink products sold to us under the guise of “finding a cure,” or “raising awareness,” or “research” contain the very chemicals that can CAUSE cancer in the first place! Read More »

An end to pinkwashing, once and for all

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annie sartorBy Annie Sartor
Policy and Campaigns Coordinator, Breast Cancer Action

Why is the breast cancer epidemic still raging after 30 years of “awareness” and pink ribbon products?

Each year, corporations pack the shelves with pink ribbon products, surrounding us with “breast cancer awareness” messages. These products help to raise billions of dollars in the name of breast cancer, and yet more than 40,000 women in the U.S. still die of the disease every year. And many corporations sell pink ribbon products in the name of breast cancer that actually contain chemicals linked to an increased risk of the disease. At Breast Cancer Action, we call this blatant hypocrisy “pinkwashing.” Read More »

Think Before You Pink®: Toxic Time Is Up!

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By Karuna Jaggar, Executive Director

Today is October 1st and I have a severe case of déjà vu. Congress and the President are facing off, yet again, while the public pays the price. And once again, countless corporations are enjoying the marketing bonanza of “Breast Cancer Industry Month” while women pay the price with their lives.

And, yet again, corporations are selling pink ribbon products in the name of breast cancer that contain chemicals linked to an increased risk of the disease.

Do you have any idea how many toxic chemicals are in the average pink ribbon product? Nope? Neither do we. Nor does anyone!

All anyone knows for certain is that only a small handful—about 200 of the over 80,000 chemicals in use in the United States—have been tested for human safety. And that’s a serious problem. For all of us. Enough is enough. I’m pushing back on pink! Read More »

Free Webinar: What Are Pink Ribbons Hiding?

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By Annie Sartor, Policy and Campaigns Coordinator

Are you dreading October, a.k.a. Breast CancerIndustry Month? Are you bracing yourself for this year’s parade of pink ?

Don’t bury your head in the sand just yet! Join me and other pink ribbon-fatigued activists on our next free community webinar in October, when we’ll ask and explore “What Are Pink Ribbons Hiding?” and how we can use this year’s Breast Cancer Industry Month to make a real change in the breast cancer epidemic. Read More »

Pinktober alert

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thinkbeforeyoupink“I just want to bury my head in the sand during October, I’m so sick of all the pink crap.”
-BCAction member

Sometimes, we all want to bury our heads in the sand during October. But we’re so much more effective when we stand up with all the other thousands of people who feel the same way, and turn our anger into action.  Read More »

You’re invited: Action Speaks Louder Than Pink – Food for Thought

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Join us to Think Before You Pink® this October while enjoying a delicious four-course dinner prepared by top executive chefs.

Action Speaks Louder Than Pink -Food For Thought  Read More »

Get your ticket: Acting Out – For the Health of It – 5/22/13

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ActingOut_LogoAs we do the hard work of challenging the status quo of breast cancer, spending time together as a community becomes so valuable.

We’re really looking forward to spending an evening with you and others in the Breast Cancer Action network next week at our Acting Out  - For the Health of It event at Brava Theater.

Read More »

In Memoriam: Barbara A. Brenner, 1951-2013

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Barbara Brenner Even after ALS had silenced her vocal chords, Barbara Brenner’s powerful voice continued to send tremors into the medical establishment.

With the assistance of a text-to-speech computer program, Brenner, the former executive director of Breast Cancer Action, sent stinging missives to the head of the ALS clinical trials program and Food and Drug Administration officials, and continued her less public work of advising others dealing with ALS and breast cancer.

Read More »

Free Webinar: Separating Hype from Hope: Breast Cancer Media Literacy

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media literacyDo headlines like these ever stop you in your tracks?

“Cancer Breakthrough!” “New treatment Discovered!” “New Breast Cancer discovery!” “Cure!”

As media consumers, how can we separate the media hype from the real progress? How can we understand the relevance and importance of a news story, as well as determine whether a particular article is only telling half the story or lacks adequate evidence? Read More »

FREE Pink Ribbons, Inc. screening in San Francisco

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Breast Cancer Action and UCSF Campus Life Services Arts and Events are excited to announce a FREE screening of Pink Ribbons, Inc., a documentary directed by veteran documentary filmmaker Léa Pool for the National Film Board of Canada. Read More »

Rally to outlaw human gene patents

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Can anyone own the sun or the air?

The very idea is absurd; yet, this question is the crux of our case coming before the U.S. Supreme Court on April 15th. Currently, Myriad Genetics owns a patent on the human BRCA 1&2 genes – more commonly known as the “breast cancer” genes. Breast Cancer Action believes that human genes belong to human beings, not corporations.

On April 15, 2013, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments for this case. Please, join Breast Cancer Action and activists from across the country for a rally to outlaw human gene patents. Read More »

BCAction & the ACLU in DC on Jan. 30th – You’re Invited!

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By Karuna Jaggar, Executive Director

Breast Cancer Action’s case against the BRCA gene patent is going to the Supreme Court! Please join me in Washington, DC on Wednesday, January 30th to learn more about our upcoming case against Myriad Genetics, the company that holds a patent on the BRCA1&2 genes (the so-called “breast cancer” genes.) Breast Cancer Action is the only breast cancer organization that is a plaintiff in this landmark case represented by the ACLU. Read More »

A corporation owns my genes — and yours

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By Runi Limary, breast cancer survivor and co-plaintiff on Myriad Genetics lawsuit

Seven years ago, when I was just 28, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. Four years ago, I joined the lawsuit challenging Myriad Genetics’ right to own the “breast cancer genes,” BRCA 1 and 2, which we all have in our bodies.

I believe patenting human genes is wrong. I’m proud to stand alongside Breast Cancer Action in this landmark lawsuit that will be heard by the Supreme Court this spring. Read More »

I trust Breast Cancer Action to tell me the truth

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By Britta Reida, BCAction member

The first time I donated to Breast Cancer Action, I was struggling financially. My initial reaction to their request for financial support was: “I wish I could, but I can’t afford it. Once I can meet my own needs, then I can help others.”

I feared toxic chemicals in my environment were at least partially to blame for my breast cancer diagnosis and was spending my money on several anti-cancer supplements and detoxifying products. I didn’t have much wiggle room in my budget. Read More »

Women count on us, and we count on you

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By Karuna Jaggar, Executive Director

I get too many gut-wrenching calls from friends and acquaintances telling me they’ve been diagnosed with breast cancer. Each time, I live with the terrible truth that despite the popular promise that “early detection saves lives,” I know no matter how early breast cancer is found, there are no guarantees with this disease.

That’s why Breast Cancer Action will always be unapologetic about challenging assumptions – and inspiring change – to address and end this breast cancer epidemic.

Women count on Breast Cancer Action, and we count on you. We depend on you to invest in the game-changing work we’re doing together. Will you make a donation to Breast Cancer Action right now? Read More »

Thank you, thank you, and thank you again

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Thank you, thank you, and thank you again. We can’t say it enough. Thank you!

Thank you for being part of Breast Cancer Action’s community of fierce, passionate, committed activists and for all the big and small ways you work to address and end this breast cancer epidemic.

Your individual actions—writing letters, passing out toolkits, attending webinars, rallying your friends, donating money, and generally raising a ruckus—are part of the tremendous collective work our community does together. Together we’re a mighty force for change. Read More »

Chesapeake Energy Doesn’t Fracking Get It

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Chesapeake Energy and its subsidiary Nomac Drilling have nominated themselves for worst pinkwasher of the year.

In case you missed it last week, Nomac Drilling has been promoting ”breast cancer awareness” by wrapping a new drilling rig in pink all while fracking the heck out of communities across the U.S. Fracking is an extremely toxic process used to extract oil or natural gas that exposes people to a variety of chemicals, some of which are linked to breast cancer. Read More »

What the Frack? Drill Rig Goes Pink(washing) for Breast Cancer

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By Annie Sartor, BCAction Policy and Campaigns Coordinator

If you thought pink KFC buckets of fried chicken was as bad as pinkwashing could get, we’ve got news for you.

Turns out Nomac Drilling, the second largest natural gas producer in the U.S., is in the running for worst pinkwasher yet. Recently the company unveiled their drilling rig wrapped in a big bold pink ribboned package in support of breast cancer awareness! Nomac Drilling, and its parent company, Chesapeake Energy, claim to care about women living with and at risk of breast cancer by promoting their pink rig, while they continue to pump cancer-linked chemicals into our environment. You know what this is: PINKWASHING! Read More »

Free Webinar: Toxic Cosmetics: Demanding Stronger Regulation

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Last month, we talked about the unique role our government plays in regulating toxins and chemicals so they don’t make it into our food chain, our water, the air we breathe and the beauty and cleaning products we use all day, every day. This month, we invite you to participate in our free webinar, featuring two of our partners—the California Healthy Nail Salon Collaborative and the Environmental Working Group, to present “Toxic Cosmetics Part II: Demanding Stronger Regulation.” Read More »

Thanks for taking action with us

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Thank you to the thousands of Breast Cancer Action members who took action during this year’s Think Before You Pink ® campaign, “It’s an Epidemic, Stupid!” You are awesome.

Activists like you across the country asked elected officials in all 50 states (as well as DC and Puerto Rico) to support our 2012 Breast Cancer Action Mandate for Government Action. Read More »

Put Down the Pink, and Pick Up Your Pen!

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By Britta Reida, Breast Cancer Action member

Ah, October. The month I, and most other breast cancer survivors I know, dread. Why can’t October be about beautiful foliage, pumpkins, and cozy sweaters in the crisp, autumn air? Why does October have to be a time when we’re all drowning in a sea of pink ribbons?

There are multiple things that bother me about Breast Cancer Awareness Month. One is that not only are we supposed to think that shopping is the best way to fight breast cancer (it’s really not), but many of the pink ribbon products actually contain chemicals that could give us cancer. What?! Read More »

Straight from the “Imitation is the Greatest Form of Flattery” Department

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By Joyce Bichler, Breast Cancer Action Deputy Director

Last week New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced, to great fanfare, guidelines for best practices in breast cancer cause marketing (finally!).

And in equally great fanfare, Susan G. Komen for the Cure and the Breast Cancer Research Foundation touted their ‘sign-on’ with the Attorney General. These “best practices” came after  a yearlong review of pink ribbon campaigns found that consumers often don’t have sufficient information to understand where the money from their purchases is really going.  We could have told them that 10 years ago—and we did! Read More »

Calling All Breast Cancer Patients: It’s Time to Party!

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By Sheila Bacon Cain, Breast Cancer Action member

Ever since I was diagnosed with stage II invasive breast cancer three years ago, it seems I’ve become quite popular. I’ve never had a shortage of party invitations, but since my breast was removed and all my hair fell out,the invitations just haven’t stopped coming.

October seems to be a particularly popular month for festivities. Just last week I was asked if I wanted to be a model in a fashion show for an event benefitting local breast cancer non-profits. Music! Food! Drinks! Dancing! And a few weeks ago, I was invited to come celebrate my survivorship aboard a cruise ship docked in Seattle. The party promised to be oodles of fun, complete with pink balloons and pink frosted cupcakes. Read More »

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