New York, NY (PRWEB) December 13, 2011
Reverend Al Sharpton, President and Founder of National Action Network, today expressed concerns over recent actions by Walgreens, noting the retailer’s widely-reported decision to end its relationship with Express Scripts will likely result in increased prescription costs for “the elderly, union members, Medicaid patients, the working poor and families of color.”
In a letter to Walgreens CEO Gregory Wasson, Sharpton writes, “A failure to resolve your issues with Express Scripts, a low-cost prescription program, will have a significant and detrimental impact on New York City residents locally” because Walgreens is preparing a merger with Duane Reade Drugstores. Both Walgreens and Duane Reade have a significant New York presence.
In releasing the letter, Sharpton pointed to “A troubling history with regard to underserved minority community,” noting that over the last five years, Walgreens has had problems in a variety of states regarding efforts to abandon or restrict Medicaid program patients from coming to their stores; that the Equal Opportunity Employment Commission brought one of the largest and most flagrant racial discrimination cases against Walgreens for its unequal, unfair, illegal employment practices against 10,000 African American retail management and pharmacy employees; and that Medicaid patients have been subject to unequal treatment and care at Walgreens.
“National Action Network urges Walgreens, in the strongest possible terms, to reconsider their current path and the signal that sends to our underserved, low-income communities that they are essentially second-class citizens and undesired as Walgreens customers. It is of paramount importance that you settle your problem with Express Scripts, and keep our prescription costs down.”
National Action Network is one of the leading civil rights organizations in the Nation, with chapters throughout the U.S. Founded in 1991 by Reverend Al Sharpton, NAN works within the spirit and tradition of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to promote a modern civil rights agenda that includes the fight for one standard of justice, decency and equal opportunities for all people regardless of race, religion, national origin, and gender.
ATTACHMENT: Letter to Walgreens CEO Gregory D. Wasson