ASH recognizes that corporate social responsibility (CSR) has become an important part of the private sector’s role in society, and when operated sincerely with the right intent, CSR has the ability to positively impact communities and to mitigate any negative impacts a particular industry may cause.
BUT tobacco industry CSR is actually another form of industry marketing that circumvents sovereign nations’ tobacco marketing restrictions that are meant to protect their citizens from the disease and death caused by tobacco products. The tobacco industry must not be allowed to provide donations to the communities it is simultaneously hurting with the products it advertises and assume that the score is settled. Their manipulative donations have not gone unnoticed.
We track the tobacco industry and its CSR marketing schemes across the globe. No amount of charitable giving by the industry can make up for the fact that they profit considerably from costly addictions, painful diseases, and countless deaths that all result from their unnecessary products and existence.
Tobacco products kill up to half of their users, and the high costs of a tobacco addiction or disease deprive poor families of much needed income.
An African delegate at the World Health Assembly in 2013 put it best when saying, “The best corporate social responsibility action the tobacco industry could take in our country is to close its doors and go home.”
• Have you witnessed tobacco industry misconduct in your region, country, state, or county? Report it here by submitting your stories, photos, videos to firstname.lastname@example.org