Global VAX Advocates Target ‘Murderna’ Greed—with Daily Protests

In News by Ged Kenslea

DAILY PROTESTS at Cambridge HQ – Weekdays, Nov. 8 through Nov. 12 and Nov. 15 through Nov. 19

 

CEO Stéphane Bancel nabbed $59M after Moderna’s 2019 IPO and landed a $13M salary in 2020 while much of the world remains desperate for access to lifesaving COVID-19 vaccines; Advocacy includes daily sidewalk protests, a television spot and a mailer targeting Bancel as a ‘pandemic profiteer’ being mailed to his Beacon Hill neighbors

 

 

CAMBRIDGE, MA (NOVEMBER 5, 2021) Beginning Monday, November 8, advocates from AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) and other organizations will stage two weeks of daily protests and activations targeting Moderna, maker of a key mRNA COVID-19 vaccine, and its CEO, Stéphane Bancel. Advocates will protest the biotech company’s pandemic profiteering and its—and its CEO’s—unwillingness to share its lifesaving vaccine more equitably with those in need around the world by rebranding the company logo to read “Murderna.”

The protests—including a variety of street theater activations with skeletons, hazmat suits, carboard coffins, money bags and more—will kick off in front of the company’s headquarters in Cambridge Monday, November 8 with an intial protest at 3:00 p.m. to be then followed with daily protests at 12:00 p.m. (noon) continuing each weekday November 9 through November 12 and the following week November 15 through November 19. Inaddition to the protests, a postcard mailer headlined “Did You Know Your Neighbor is a Greedy Pandemic Profiteer?” will be mailed to residents in select zip codes in CEO Bancel’s Beacon Hill neighborhood and a cable and broadcast TV spot that will air on Boston area stations. (Bancel TV spot link)

WHAT: Vaccinate our World (VOW) Protests at Moderna’s World HQ in Cambridge
WHEN: MODERNA CAMBRIDGE PROTESTS –

·       Monday, Nov. 8 at 3:00 p.m. ET

·       Thursday Nov. 9 thru Friday Nov. 12, 12:00 p.m. ET

·       Monday Nov. 15 thru Friday Nov. 19, 12:00 p.m. ET

WHERE: 200 Technology Square, Cambridge, MA 02139
WHO: Approximately 15 to 30 community advocates each day, including AHF and partner organizations
NEWS DESK NOTE &  B-ROLL VISUALS On various days, sidewalk protest actions to include picket lines on the sidewalk in front of Moderna’s headquarters; street theater with skeletons, hazmat suits, carboard coffins, 3-foot globe balloons, money bags, and more.

 

According to the Boston Globe, Moderna’s stock plunged last Thursday after Wall Street reacted to news that its vaccine sales totals will not be as gargantuan as expected: as much as $5 billion less than initially forecast. Last month, a blistering front-page New York Times article (Moderna, Racing for Profits, Keeps Covid Vaccine Out of Reach of Poor) traced Moderna’s meteoric monetary rise thanks to its COVID-19 vaccine: from total revenue of $60 million in 2019 to (a then expected) $20 billion in revenue this year,” which a Morningstar analyst projected could include company profits on the vaccine “… as high as $14 billion.”

 

The Guardian reported that Moderna … charged the US government (which helped fund the development of the vaccine) up to $16.50 a dose, and has sold it for $22 to $37 outside the US.” (“COVID-19 Vaccines: the Contracts, Prices and Profits” The Guardian, Julia Kollewe, (8/11/21)  AstraZeneca, one of Moderna’s competitors, sells its vaccine for under $5.00.

The New York Times quoted Dr. Tom Frieden, a former head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, saying “They (Moderna) are behaving as if they have absolutely no responsibility beyond maximizing the return on investment.” The paper also reported:

  • Of the handful of middle-income countries that have reached deals to buy Moderna’s shots,most have not yet received any doses, and at least three have had to pay more than the United States or European Union did, according to government officials in those countries.
  • The United States also kicked in $1.3 billionfor clinical trials and other research. And in August 2020, the government agreed to preorder $1.5 billion of the vaccine, guaranteeing that Moderna would have a market for what was an unproven product.

“Our message to Moderna remains clear: greed KILLS, and we will simply not tolerate pandemic profiteering ant further,” said Tracy Jones, Midwest Regional Director and National Director for Advocacy for AHF. “In low-income countries only about 4% of people have been vaccinated, with Africa hit especially hard. We will not allow pharma companies to keep lifesaving treatment from millions of people by charging exorbitant prices for medicines often developed with taxpayer support. Moderna must lower its vaccine prices, share its patents and technology with other countries and be transparent about its vaccine business dealings so that production may be scaled up across the world in order to truly address our global pandemic. We will be here for the next two weeks and won’t stop until Moderna does the right thing!”

 

Over the summer, AHF spearheaded similar protests targeting Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson at their headquarters as fellow egregious pandemic profiteers.

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MEDIA CONTACTS:

Tonya Thurman, MHA, Associate Director of Mobilization Campaigns for AHF 614.223.11532 mobile  [email protected]

John Farina, Associate Director of Advocacy – Social Media Platforms for AHF  216-832-7106 mobile [email protected]

Ged Kenslea, Senior Director, Communications for AHF +1.323.791.5526  mobile [email protected]

Mr. W. Imara Canady, AHF National Director, Communications & Community Engagement, +1.770.940.6555 mobile  [email protected]

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