Posts

NCL supports President Biden’s nominee for Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration

October 3, 2023

Media contact: National Consumers League – Melody Merin, melodym@nclnet.org, 202-207-2831

Washington, D.C. – Today, the National Consumers League (NCL) urged the U.S. Senate to swiftly confirm President Biden’s nominee for Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Michael G. Whitaker. Despite a growing number of problems under the FAA’s jurisdiction—including an alarming number of near-misses involving passenger aircraft—the Administration has lacked a Senate-confirmed Administrator for eighteen months. 

The following statement is attributable to NCL Chief Executive Officer Sally Greenberg: 

“The FAA has been without a permanent administrator for too long. Without strong leadership, the agency will struggle to fulfill critical consumer protection mandates, including Congress’s 2018 directive that the agency set minimum seat sizes on airplanes. The Senate should act to restore the full strength of the Administration and confirm Mr. Whitaker as FAA Administrator.”  

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About the National Consumers League (NCL)
The National Consumers League, founded in 1899, is America’s pioneer consumer organization.  Our mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad.  For more information, visit nclnet.org.

NCL stands with Swifties in testimony before Congress

September 27, 2023

Media contact: National Consumers League – Melody Merin, melodym@nclnet.org, 202-207-2831

WASHINGTON, DC – Testifying before a Congressional committee, the National Consumers League (NCL) today urged support for comprehensive ticketing reform legislation to fix a “rigged” live event industry. NCL, America’s oldest consumer and worker advocacy organization, described how the November 2022 meltdown of Ticketmaster’s ticketing system during the on-sale for Taylor Swift’s Era’s Tour exposed the “ugly underbelly” of the industry.

“There has never been a better time to reform live event ticketing,” said John Breyault, NCL’s Vice President for Public Policy, Telecommunications, and Fraud. “While the Taylor Swift meltdown may have been an anomaly, it exposed the ugly underbelly of a live event industry that is rigged to maximize profits for a select few and frustration for everyone else.”

Of the three event ticketing bills considered by the subcommittee, Breyault called the “BOSS and SWIFT ACT of 2023,” sponsored by Representatives Bill Pascrell (D-NJ9), Frank Pallone (D-NJ6), Julia Brownley (D-CA26), and Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) “the single most comprehensive pro-fan and pro-competition ticketing legislation before Congress.” NCL supports the BOSS and SWIFT ACT because it includes a range of ticket industry reforms, including requiring better disclosure of ticket refund policies, shedding daylight on ticket “holdbacks” that siphon tickets away from the average fan, clamping down on unauthorized speculative ticket sales, and helping protect consumers from Ticketmaster’s anti-competitive efforts to extend its monopoly into the secondary ticket market.

NCL also voiced support for two other ticketing bills: Representatives Gus Bilirakis’ (R-FL12) and Jan Schakowsky’s (D-IL9) TICKET ACT, which would mandate all-in pricing of tickets and better disclosure of speculative ticket sales, as well as draft legislation that would ban speculative ticketing outright, while carving out ticket-buying services.

In addition to the ticketing bills, NCL testified in support of Representative David Valadao’s (D-CA22) Online Dating Safety Act of 2023 which would notify users of online dating apps that someone they messaged on the app was banned; Representative Young Kim’s (R-CA40) No Hidden Fees on Extra Expenses for Stays Act, which would mandate all-in pricing in the hotel and short-term lodging industries; and Representative Lisa McClain’s (R-MI9) and Representative Mary Peltola’s (D-AK) WIPPES Act, which would require manufacturers of cleaning wipes to label their cleaning wipes as non-flushable in order to protect wastewater infrastructure and consumers’ plumbing systems from damage.

NCL’s written testimony is available here.

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About the National Consumers League (NCL)
The National Consumers League, founded in 1899, is America’s pioneer consumer organization.  Our mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad.  For more information, visit nclnet.org.

NCL supports updated merger guidelines

September 20, 2023

Media contact: National Consumers League – Katie Brown, katie@nclnet.org, 202-823-8442

Washington, D.C. – The National Consumers League sent a letter in support of the draft merger guidelines that the U.S. Department of Justice  and the Federal Trade Commission proposed in July of this year. The guidelines reflect an approach to antitrust enforcement that is grounded in statute and judicial precedent and are a significant improvement from the narrower focus of previous enforcement regimes. By centering market competition as the goal of antitrust law, the DOJ and FTC can appropriately act to protect consumers and workers when mergers pose a threat to the public. 

The full letter can be found here.

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About the National Consumers League (NCL)
The National Consumers League, founded in 1899, is America’s pioneer consumer organization.  Our mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad.  For more information, visit nclnet.org.

National Consumers League urges Ticketmaster to refund Springsteen fans

September 11, 2023

Media contact: National Consumers League – Melody Merin, melodym@nclnet.org, 202-207-2831

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National Consumers League (“NCL”) today urged Ticketmaster to immediately offer refunds to fans who purchased tickets to Bruce Springsteen’s postponed concerts. Due to illness, the rock icon recently announced indefinite postponements of the remainder of the concerts currently scheduled for September. According to Ticketmaster’s Purchase Policy, consumers will only be able to obtain refunds when the postponed concerts are rescheduled for a date to be determined.

The following statement is attributable to NCL Chief Executive Officer, Sally Greenberg:

“Like millions of other fans, our best wishes go out to Bruce Springsteen in light of his pressing medical issues, and we wish him a speedy recovery. Throughout his career, he has put his fans first. However, given the announcement that multiple upcoming concerts have been postponed to a date to be determined, we are concerned that consumers are not being given the option by Ticketmaster to obtain refunds for their tickets. Due to Ticketmaster’s policies, millions of dollars in fans’ funds are stuck in limbo, potentially for months or even longer.

We understand that many of Springsteen’s fans may opt to hold onto their tickets and will plan to see The Boss when his concerts are rescheduled. Until then, Ticketmaster will almost certainly be earning interest on fans’ funds that are locked up due to the company’s refund policy. Essentially, due to its policies, Ticketmaster is forcing fans to give the company an interest-free loan for an indeterminate period. It is a bedrock consumer protection principle that when a consumer does not get a product she paid for, a prompt refund should be issued. Ticketmaster should give consumers the option to immediately obtain refunds not just for Bruce Springsteen’s concerts, but for all postponed events going forward.”

 

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About the National Consumers League (NCL)
The National Consumers League, founded in 1899, is America’s pioneer consumer organization.  Our mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad.  For more information, visit nclnet.org.

NCL urges Senate committee to pass the College for All Act

August 28, 2023

Media contact: National Consumers League – Katie Brown, katie@nclnet.org, 202-823-8442

Washington, D.C. – Today, the National Consumers League (NCL) urged the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance to favorably report the College for All Act of 2023.

The National Consumers League1 (NCL) urges the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance to favorably report S.1963, or the College for All Act of 2023, without delay. The College for All Act would transform the nation’s system of higher education by allowing millions of students to pursue college degrees that they otherwise could not afford. Additionally, it would prevent student debt from continuing to burden future attendees of higher learning, a significant issue currently affecting graduates, individuals with partial educational attainment, and parents of students.” 

The full letter can be found here.

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About the National Consumers League (NCL)
The National Consumers League, founded in 1899, is America’s pioneer consumer organization.  Our mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad.  For more information, visit nclnet.org.

National Consumers League response to the Request for Information regarding FDA regulation of CBD

August 25, 2023

Media contact: National Consumers League – Katie Brown, katie@nclnet.org, 202-823-8442

Washington, D.C. – On August 17, the National Consumers League responded to the Request for Information regarding FDA-Regulation of CBD.

In 2019, in response to the proliferation of unreviewed and untested CBD products, NCL identified the need for greater education among consumers about CBD and better enforcement of regulations in the CBD marketplace. NCL created Consumers for Safe CBD to address the need, champion the rights of consumers, and call on government and industry to do better – to ensure safety and promote a pathway for new products through clinically tested scientific research. Since then, action has been taken on the state and federal levels to increase access to cannabinoids beyond CBD. In response, NCL expanded our educational campaign and established Cannabis Consumer Watch.” 

The full letter can be found here.

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About the National Consumers League (NCL)
The National Consumers League, founded in 1899, is America’s pioneer consumer organization.  Our mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad.  For more information, visit nclnet.org.

NCL sends letter to Illinois Attorney General on mass arbitration

August 18, 2023

Media contact: National Consumers League – Katie Brown, katie@nclnet.org, 202-823-8442

Washington, D.C. – The National Consumers League sent a letter to Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul on the practice of mass arbitration. NCL CEO Sally Greenberg urged the office to look into these issues to avoid denying consumers the redress and remedies to which they are entitled under the law and further delays in justice and accountability.

The full letter can be found here.

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About the National Consumers League (NCL)
The National Consumers League, founded in 1899, is America’s pioneer consumer organization.  Our mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad.  For more information, visit nclnet.org.

National Consumers League supports the SAG-AFTRA strike

August 4, 2023

Media contact: National Consumers League – Katie Brown, katie@nclnet.org, 202-823-8442

Washington, D.C. – The National Consumers League supports the SAG-AFTRA nationwide strike announced on July 14, 2023 against the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers. After a union wide vote authorized the strike with 97.7% voting yes, more than 150,000 movie, theater, and streaming actors have gone on strike.  AMPTP represents over 350 American television and film production companies, including Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures, Universal Pictures, Walt Disney Studios, Warner Bros, ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, Netflix, Apple TV+, and Amazon.

SAG-AFTRA President Fran Drescher has been outspoken about the union’s frustration with the studios and networks.  “The Association of Motion Picture and Television Producers’ (AMPTP) responses to the union’s most important proposals have been insulting and disrespectful of our massive contributions to this industry,” Drescher and chief negotiator Duncan Crabtree-Ireland have said.

The strike started after negotiations with AMPTP failed, despite SAG-AFTRA’s very reasonable demands:

  • Residual payments from streaming services based on viewership numbers
  • Streaming services won’t release statistics on streaming numbers to the union.
  • Protections and restitution for studios using Artificial Intelligence to reproduce an actor’s likeness
  • More regulation on “Self Taped Auditions” in which actors film their own auditions instead of within a casting studio. SAG-AFTRA says this creates an unfair burden being placed on actors
  • Increased contributions to pension, health and welfare funds.
  • Increased pay across the board and a living wage for those who work in the industry.

This strike coincides with the Writers Guild of America’s strike against the AMPTP; NCL also supports that group of writers who are striking. This marks the first time in 63 years that that both of these major unions have been forced to simultaneously go on strike.

The issues facing SAG-AFTRA and the Writers Guild of America are almost identical: workers in this industry have seen their pay slowly diminished by inflation during the last several years, they face a reduction in residuals, less working time for shows, and the threat of artificial intelligence to replace actual writers and editors.

Sally Greenberg, NCL’s CEO, explained the reason for her organization’s support. “We have always been pro worker and this strike is no exception, except that the disparity in pay between industry executives and performers is more shocking than ever. Disney CEO Bob Iger’s board of directors handed him a two-year $27-million-per-year contract extension the day before the vote. Other studio executives make many millions as well, and yet they expect performers and writers in the industry – whose creativity is responsible for the success of these shows – to work for diminishing salaries and reduced benefits such that many cannot earn a living wage. The AMPTP refuses to even consider ideas like a plan for actors to participate in streaming revenue, for example.”

NCL also recognizes the strong solidarity that these striking performers have shown. For weeks, hundreds have kept the picket lines active at major AMPTP locations. Several major Hollywood SAG-AFTRA members have given generous donations in the millions to support striking performers who may not be able to afford rent or food due being shut out of their occupation by the AMPTP. Some of these individuals include Leonardo DiCaprio, Nicole Kidman, Dwayne Johnson, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Matt Damon.

We also include below the statement of AFL-CIO President Liz Shuler in support of the performers represented by SAG-AFTRA.

AFL-CIO Statement on SAG-AFTRA

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About the National Consumers League (NCL)
The National Consumers League, founded in 1899, is America’s pioneer consumer organization.  Our mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad.  For more information, visit nclnet.org.

Script Your Future launches eleventh annual student competition for innovations in medication adherence

January 18, 2022

Media contact: National Consumers League – Carol McKay, carolm@nclnet.org, (412) 945-3242

Washington, DC—Today marks the launch of the eleventh annual Script Your Future Medication Adherence Team Challenge, a two-month-long intercollegiate competition among pharmacy student teams and faculty for creating solutions to raise awareness about medication adherence as a critical public health issue. The Challenge, hosted by the National Consumers League (NCL), is returning to university campuses across the country building on a decade of successful student competition and innovation. 

The Challenge is an integral part of Script Your Future, a campaign launched by NCL and its partners in 2011 to combat the problem of poor medication adherence in the United States, where nearly three out of four patients do not take their medication as directed. In addition to medication adherence, in 2022 teams will counsel patients on vaccine confidence and safe drug disposal. 

Both faculty and student participants from last year’s awarded teams have reflected on their experiences in the Script Your Future program: 

“The Script Your Future Team Challenge was a great way for our pharmacy students to collaborate with other health professional students and positively impact our community by being a part of the COVID-19 response efforts, vaccinating thousands of individuals against COVID-19, addressing vaccine hesitancy, as well as providing patient education regarding medication adherence. We appreciate the opportunity the Challenge offered our students, and we are looking forward to participating again this year!”  

—Lisa Hong, PharmD, Associate Professor, Loma Linda University School of Pharmacy 

“Participating in Script Your Future was a refreshing experience and helped me and my students step outside of our frustration with the COVID-19 pandemic and do something about it. It was wonderful to have the opportunity to work with colleagues and students from other programs toward a single goal. Everyone, especially the students, really stepped up and thought outside the box to achieve the goals of Script Your Future.”  

—Erin Gysbers, PA-C, Didactic Director, Assistant Professor, Loma Linda University 

“I am extremely proud of the efforts of our team to achieve vaccination rates as high as 96 percent in our community. This is just a small testament to what we are all capable of in contributing to keep our communities safe and I am excited for future efforts.”  

—Joseph Velasco, PharmD Class of 2022, Loma Linda University School of Pharmacy  

“The Script Your Future Team Challenge has given me the opportunity to create numerous online resources to help patients with their medication adherence and to increase their COVID-19 vaccine confidence. This experience challenged me to work creatively with our WesternU’s AMCP Research and Education committee to not only create helpful infographics, but to widen the accessibility of these resources through QR codes and a texting service. These electronic tools gave patients improved access to our helpful resources on our very own WesternU AMCP Health Helper website. We also expanded onto social media and physically delivered our resources to pharmacies, local communities, and schools in Pomona, California. Participating in this program has been an experience that will resonate through my future career.” 

—Andrew Pham, PharmD Class of 2024, Western University of Health Sciences College of Pharmacy  

As the nation continues to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, Script Your Future teams are encouraged to build their campaigns centering around vaccine confidence to help address hesitancy and mitigate further spread of the coronavirus. Teams are encouraged to tailor their outreach towards chronic health issues including cardiovascular disease, hypertension, diabetes, and respiratory illnesses. Challenge administrators also welcome the inclusion of other disease groups that would benefit from medication adherence-related interventions. Teams are also encouraged to integrate messaging on the importance of safe drug disposal. Patient counseling on this topic will help patients to know how to properly and safely dispose of their medications after they are no longer needed.  

Through March 28, inter-professional teams—including student pharmacists, nurses, doctors, and others—will implement creative approaches to outreach in their communities to raise awareness and improve understanding about medication adherence. At the end of the Challenge, teams submit entries for review by national partner organizations, and winners are recognized for their efforts to improve medication adherence. 

Last year, Team Challenge student health professionals were met with unique circumstances, hurdles, and obstacles as they navigated the historic COVID-19 pandemic, which resulted in school closures, event cancelations, and a host of other challenges. In spite of this, more than 5,000 future healthcare professionals and volunteers from 78 participating health professions schools participated. Collectively, the teams directly counseled close to 150,000 patients and vaccinated over 134,000 consumers, nationwide. Since the Team Challenge began in 2011, more than 18,800 future healthcare professionals have participated, reaching nearly 26 million consumers. 

Last year’s national award winner was University of Charleston School of Pharmacy. Other schools winning category-specific honors included: University of the Sciences School of Pharmacy; Loma Linda School of Pharmacy; Howard University College of Pharmacy; Wilkes University Nesbitt School of Pharmacy; University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy; and Western University College of Pharmacy. Additional participating schools received finalist and runner-up status across a variety of award categories. 

The Team Challenge is sponsored by the American Pharmacists Association (APhA), the National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) Foundation, and the National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA). 

To learn about previous winners, visit Script Your Future’s online home. 

For more information on the Challenge, visit the Team Challenge community website. 

Tweet along with us during the Team Challenge using #SYFchallenge, and follow the campaign @IWillTakeMyMeds. 

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About National Consumers League

The National Consumers League, founded in 1899, is America’s pioneer consumer organization. Our mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad. For more information, visit www.nclnet.org.

About Script Your Future

Script Your Future is a campaign of the National Consumers League (NCL), a private, non-profit membership organization founded in 1899. NCL’s mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad. For more information about the Script Your Future campaign, visit ScriptYourFuture.org. For more information on NCL, please visit nclnet.org.

Script Your Future launches tenth annual student competition for innovations in medication adherence

February 1, 2021

Media contact: National Consumers League – Carol McKay, carolm@nclnet.org, (412) 945-3242 or Taun Sterling, tauns@nclnet.org, (202) 207-2832

Washington, DC—Today marks the launch of the tenth annual Script Your Future Medication Adherence Team Challenge, a two-month-long intercollegiate competition among health profession student teams and faculty for creating solutions to raise awareness about medication adherence as a critical public health issue. The Challenge, hosted by the National Consumers League (NCL), is returning to university campuses across the country after nine years of successful student competition and innovation.

The Challenge is an integral part of Script Your Future, a campaign launched by NCL and its partners in 2011 to combat the problem of poor medication adherence in the United States, where nearly three out of four patients do not take their medication as directed.

“Today’s medications are better than ever at treating and curing people, but these treatments can only work if patients know the importance of taking their prescriptions as directed. It takes all members of the health team to make that happen,” said Sally Greenberg, NCL Executive Director. “For 10 years, our Script Your Future Medication Adherence Team Challenge has galvanized student health professionals to explore creative, interprofessional approaches, in encouraging medication adherence. To usher Script Your Future into the next era of improving adherence, we have implemented two new components to the Team Challenge: technology innovation and vaccine adherence. We have been blown away by the ingenuity of our student teams, and we look forward to how they will contribute to their communities in this year’s Team Challenge.”

As the nation continues to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, Script Your Future teams are encouraged to build their campaigns centering around vaccine confidence to help address hesitancy and mitigate further spread of the coronavirus. Teams are encouraged to tailor their outreach towards chronic health issues including cardiovascular disease, hypertension, diabetes, and respiratory illnesses. Challenge administrators also welcome the inclusion of other disease groups that would benefit from medication adherence-related interventions.

The Challenge is sponsored by the American Pharmacists Association (APhA), the National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) Foundation, and the National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA).

Through April 2, inter-professional teams—including student pharmacists, nurses, doctors, and others—will implement creative outreach approaches in their communities to raise awareness and improve understanding about medication adherence. At the end of the Challenge, teams submit entries for review by national partner organizations, and winners are recognized for their efforts to improve medication adherence.

Last year, Team Challenge student health professionals were met with unique circumstances, hurdles, and obstacles as they navigated the historic COVID-19 pandemic, which resulted in school closures, event cancelations, and a host of other challenges. To adhere to social distancing guidelines, dedicated teams pivoted their campaigns and made an impact in other ways. Ultimately, however, more than 80 teams submitted applications; the competition saw engagement from nearly 2,900 future healthcare professionals and volunteers, who hosted more than 250 events in 14 states. Collectively, the teams directly counseled close to 12,000 patients and introduced Script Your Future messaging to more than 430,000 consumers, nationwide.

Since the Team Challenge began in 2011, more than 21,000 future healthcare professionals have directly counseled nearly 87,000 patients and nearly 26 million consumers.

Last year’s national award winner was University of the Sciences: Philadelphia College of Pharmacy. Other schools winning category-specific honors included: Howard University College of Pharmacy; St. Louis College of Pharmacy; Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine School of Pharmacy (LECOM); University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy; and Western University College of Pharmacy. Additional participating schools received finalist and runner-up status across a variety of award categories.

To learn about previous winners, visit Script Your Future’s online home.

For more information on the Challenge, visit the Challenge Community website.

Tweet along with us during the Challenge using #SYFchallenge, and follow the campaign @IWillTakeMyMeds.

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About National Consumers League

The National Consumers League, founded in 1899, is America’s pioneer consumer organization. Our mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad. For more information, visit www.nclnet.org.

About Script Your Future

Script Your Future is a campaign of the National Consumers League (NCL), a private, non-profit membership organization founded in 1899. NCL’s mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad. For more information about the Script Your Future campaign, visit ScriptYourFuture.org. For more information on NCL, please visit nclnet.org.