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Media:   Brandon Cuicchi  646.284.2948




July 25, 2016 – Philadelphia, PA – Over the weekend, the New York and Philadelphia chapters of ACT UP,

the AIDS Coalition To Unleash Power,
teamed up with allies UAEM (Universities Allied for Essential Medicines)
and The Other 98% to stage a tug-of-war with pharma bro’s outside Hillary
Clinton’s Philadelphia campaign headquarters ahead of the Democratic
National Convention.

Activists targeted candidate Clinton for her refusal to renew her 2008
campaign pledges to regulate the price-gouging of medicines made by major
pharmaceutical companies like Gilead and Pfizer.  The high prices make it
hard for people with HIV as well as other people to access the lifesaving
treatment they need.

“Hillary Clinton made pledges to have 30 million on treatment by 2020. 
Many are sick, and some have died waiting for the treatment,” said ACT UP
Philadelphia member Jose De Marco.  “This is not the way to the AIDS Free
Generation she talked about.”

Currently, taxpayers help fund the development of new medicines through
grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to universities.  The
drugs are then licensed to companies to sell back to consumers at high
prices.  “Hillary Clinton must provide concrete solutions for
pharmaceutical price-gouging and challenge the current patent system for
drugs that Americans pay for with their taxes,” said Brandon Cuicchi of

Around thirty people met at the Love Statue in Philadelphia’s City Hall
Park and marched, carrying signs and chanting, to Clinton’s campaign
headquarters a few blocks away.  When they arrived, they were met by a
pharma bro played by comedian John F. O’Donnell from RT’s Redacted Tonight
along with the bigheaded likenesses of other notable pharma bros like
Martin Shkreli.

The pharma bros waved giant moneybags and challenged activists to a
tug-of-war to win influence over Hillary Clinton.
After much verbal and
physical sparring, activists dropped the rope and sent the pharma bro’s
falling to the ground in order to deliver their demands directly to
Hillary Clinton’s campaign, but they were barred from entering the
building by about 30 members of Philadelphia police on bicycles.  There
were no arrests.

About ACT UP: Founded in 1987, ACT UP (AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power),
is a diverse, non-partisan group of individuals united in anger and
committed to direct action to end the AIDS crisis. ACT UP NY meets
every Monday night at 7pm in New York City at the LGBT Community Center,
208 West 13th Street off 7th Ave. 

Photos by Erik McGregor: Photos by Marcelo Maia: Attached Video by John Riley: ###