Alicia Keys is taking a stance against marketing cigarettes to children by refusing a tobacco company’s sponsorship of an upcoming concert.
Keys is scheduled to perform a show in Jakarta, Indonesia at the end of the month. Billboards have already gone up promoting the concert in tandem with Phillip Morris/Sampoerna-made cigarettes.
The giant billboards bill the concert as “A Mild Live Production”. “A Mild” is a cigarette brand produced by Sampoerna. The billboards feature a large photo of 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.”
The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids has applauded the singer her efforts to stop the tobacco-maker from sponsoring the show . The president of the organization, Matthew L. Myers, recently recognized her in a statement on the campaign’s website.
“Alicia Keys has set a positive example that should be followed by musicians and entertainers worldwide by demanding the withdrawal of tobacco industry sponsorship of her July 31 concert in Jakarta, Indonesia,” Myers said. “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. 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.”
While it is illegal for tobacco companies to engage in brand name sponsorships of concerts in the U.S. under a 1998 legal settlement, it is allowed in developing countries like Indonesia.