It’s Time For Biden to Stand Up to Big Pharma
As we enter the third year of the COVID-19 pandemic, billions of people worldwide still don’t have access to COVID vaccines and treatments. Meanwhile, pharmaceutical companies are making $1 million per hour of profits but our elected officials refuse to stand up to them, likely because our representatives get campaign contributions from Big Pharma. Today more than ever we need a People’s Vaccine. Every life lost is avoidable. There is no time to waste.
If you’re sick (literally and figuratively) because our politicians continually pander to Big Pharma, join the Washington Fair Trade Coalition and Whole Washington, in partnership with students and faculty at the UW Department of Global Health, for a Die-In to demand world leaders stand with people to finally end this pandemic. We will be meeting at The Red Square on the UW Campus on Friday, March 11 1:00 PM to call on Biden to pass the “End the Pandemic Now” measure (H. Con. Res 60). This measure would:
- unlock intellectual property barriers via a temporary waiver of the World Trade Organization (WTO) rules now standing in the way of production increases;
- share vaccine formulas and know-how with qualified producers around the world to speed up more production; and
- provide financial support for regional vaccine manufacturing hubs.
The American people have paid for this vaccine. The mRNA vaccines developed by Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna received over $8 billion in public funding. Companies shouldn’t be profiting from this publicly funded vaccine– essentially charging us twice for the vaccine.
COVID is not going to just go away on its own. The only way we permanently stop COVID’s disruptions to our lives is if we help make vaccines, tests and treatments readily available to everyone in order to prevent new and even deadlier variants from arising. World leaders have the power right now to remove Big Pharma’s monopoly hold on COVID-19 vaccines, tests and treatments and allow countries to produce the life-saving medicines their populations desperately need.