Contact: Timothy K. Rusch

New York, NY - The following is a statement from Executive Director Rashad Robinson:

"This week, I spoke with an executive at Blue Cross Blue Shield Association who told me that the company did not renew its membership in the American Legislative Exchange Council this year, and we followed up with the company to confirm they are no longer a member of ALEC. We applaud BCBS for ending its relationship with this shadowy DC organization that would rather have our law makers work for corporations than the people.

"The ColorOfChange community is also happy to learn that Reed Elsevier (owner of LexisNexis and publisher of science and health information) left ALEC late last week, as did American Traffic Solutions and Arizona Public Service -- two Arizona-based companies. With Blue Cross Blue Shield Association's announcement yesterday, the number of companies that have decided to cut ties with ALEC grows to 11. The list also includes Mars Inc., Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, Kraft Foods, Intuit, McDonald's and Wendy's.

"We want to thank Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, American Traffic Solutions and Arizona Public Service for making the right decision, and we want to thank ColorOfChange members and our partners.

"We continue to call on all major corporations to stop funding ALEC given its involvement in voter suppression. Our members and allied groups are prepared to hold accountable companies that continue to associate themselves with an organization that attacks voting rights."

The tragedy of Trayvon Martin's death – and the so-called "stand your ground" law that helped his killer evade arrest for more than a month – is another example of how ALEC's agenda is dangerous for people of color. The NRA and ALEC exported Florida's “stand your ground” law to more than 20 states across the country, jeopardizing the safety of Americans nationwide.

ColorOfChange members signed an earlier petition targeting ALEC’s corporate partners for their role in suppressing Black votes. The petition can be found here:

In addition, more than 170,000 ColorOfChange members have signed the petition calling on the Department of Justice to take over the Trayvon Martin case, arrest Martin's killer, and launch an independent investigation into the Sanford police department's mishandling of the case. The petition can be found here:

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With more than 800,000 members, is the nation’s largest African-American online civil rights organization.