Alicia Keys Makes A Stand Against Tobacco Sponsorship

R&B star Alicia Keys has set a positive example for musicians and entertainers worldwide to follow by demanding the withdrawal of tobacco industry sponsorship of her July 31 concert in Jakarta, Indonesia. The Alicia Keys Jakarta concert had been sponsored and heavily advertised by Philip Morris International and its Indonesian subsidiary Sampoerna. According to giant billboards posted in Jakarta, the concert was billed as “A Mild Live Production”. “A Mild” is a cigarette brand produced by Sampoerna. The billboards feature a large photo of Alicia Keys, the logo for “A Mild” cigarettes and a large health warning that states, “Smoking can cause cancer, heart attacks, impotence and harm pregnancy and fetal development.” A statement from Alicia Keys says after the issue was made aware, she “immediately asked for an investigation and that corrective actions be taken.” “As a result, the tobacco company has respectfully withdrawn their sponsorship and all billboards, signage and other forms of advertising will be immediately removed.” Keys also apologized for “any misleading advertising initially associated with the show.” “We applaud Ms. Keys for taking quick action to disassociate herself from the tobacco industry and to prevent her name, image and talent from continuing to be used to market cigarettes to children,” says Matthew L. Myers, Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. “It is critical that the tobacco company involved, Philip Morris International/Sampoerna, and concert promoters immediately end the sponsorship and all tobacco-related marketing and branding associated with the concert.” Letters to Alicia Keys and Philip Morris International can be found at: http://www.tobaccofreecenter.org. Click here to see Billboard.

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