Sat up last night writing to Lucy Activewear. I'm a loyal wearer of Lucy perfect core pants, the most expensive workout pants I've ever bought and to me, the best I've ever worked out in because of compression and also found perfect for a Diep recovery - the hip-to-hip incision area. I go on the Lucy site last night and see they now have "breast cancer awareness" (BCA) wear, claiming get ready for the race, Lucy outfits inspired by YOUR support, and there in lies the rub. I clicked to see the new clothing line, with pink ribbons motifs emblazoned on the front of four tops and pink shorts. I read nothing of BCA support by Lucy Activewear or any percentage of BCA sales going to a nominated breast cancer charity.
I found on the contact page an email address and wrote them asking:
Any company can put a pink ribbon on its products. The widely recognized pink ribbon symbol is not regulated by any agency and does not necessarily mean it effectively combats the breast cancer epidemic. Can you tell me how much money from my purchase of Lucy BCA wear will go to support breast cancer programs? Can you please tell me what breast cancer programs Lucy supports?
Within a few hours this was the response:
I regret to inform you that we don't have an affiliation with any charities at this time including BCA, however we do hope to in the future.
I then sent this letter asking it to be passed to management:
Lucy Activewear Management,
The pink ribbon represents fear of breast cancer, hope for the future, and the charitable goodness of people and businesses who publicly support the breast cancer movement. It is intended to evoke solidarity with women who currently have breast cancer.
Breast cancer organizations use the pink ribbon to associate themselves with breast cancer, to promote breast cancer awareness, and to support fundraising. Some breast cancer-related organizations, such as Pink Ribbon International, use the pink ribbon as their primary symbol.
While specifically representing breast cancer awareness, the pink ribbon is also a symbol and a proxy of goodwill towards women in general. Buying, wearing, displaying, or sponsoring pink ribbons signals that the person or business cares about women. The pink ribbon is a marketing brand for businesses that allows them to promote themselves with women and identify themselves as being socially aware. Compared to other women's issues, promoting breast cancer awareness is politically safe.
Because the pink ribbon is not licensed by any corporation, it is more open to being abused by businesses that donate little or none of their revenue to breast cancer research. While companies such as Estée Lauder have distributed over 70 million pink ribbons, and donated over $25 million to breast cancer research, other companies have been discovered using the pink ribbon inappropriately—either by not donating their profits, or by using the pink ribbon on products that include ingredients which cause cancer.
The misuse of marketing campaigns by businesses using the pink ribbon on their products have been described as pinkwashing, which was coined by Breast Cancer Action. They use the term to highlight companies or products which feature a pink ribbon, without donating money to charity, or with no transparency regarding where the funds are going.
Lucy Activewear has confirmed to me, that it does not have any scheme in place to offer a percentage of sales of "breast cancer awareness" clothing (BAC). By not standing with women, such as myself, (a woman recovering from breast cancer), by having no accountability or non-profit giving in place regarding BAC sales, Lucy Activewear are colluding to profit from breast cancer and conspiring in corporate hypocrisy. I urge you to immediately put in place a process whereby an appropriate contribution of revenue from the sale of BCA promoted products, that is transferred quickly to breast cancer charities in need of funding, in a manner that is clearly visible to your customers.
Please advise the action you intend to take.
Of course, no response. I plan on sending a snail mail letter of the same today.
If you have read this far, thank you and any of you lovely women care to join me in getting Lucy Activewear to stop the pinkwashing?
Nothing is ever the same as they said it was. It's what I've never seen before that I recognise. - Diane Arbus
4/13/2012, DCIS/IDC, 1cm, Stage IB, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
6/12/2012 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): DIEP flap, Nipple reconstruction
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