Last week, I was invited to the United Nations. NYC was gridlocked. They even closed 5th Avenue for a bit to allow for motorcade upon motorcade to reach the UN. It was amazing, and humbling, to be in the building at the same time the General Assembly was in session. A true manifestation of world leaders trying to collaborate to address key issues that affect the world, not just their respective countries.
And no, I wasn’t there for the General Assembly. mallowstreet joined other finance leaders and world leaders from government/health to launch The Tobacco-Free Finance Pledge at the United Nations. This is important, because 7 million people die a year from tobacco related illnesses. According to the World Health Organization, tobacco consumption is the single largest preventable cause of death.
The Pledge encourages signatories to consider the adoption of tobacco-free finance policies across lending, insurance and investment, in line with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.
A huge congratulations to Bronwyn King, Founder and CEO at Tobacco Free Portfolios, for pioneering this initiative and bringing together such a diverse and great group of individuals. The event was co-sponsored by the French and Australian Governments, and I think the following people who I met last week deserve special recognition for having the vision to help take the first step:
Ms. Annette Dixon, Vice President for Human Development at the World Bank Group;
Ms. Agnes Buzyn, Minister of Solidarity and Health, France;
Dr. Tedros Adhanom, Director General of the World Health Organization;
Dr. Vera Luiza da Costa e Silva, Head of Convention Secretariat, WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control;
Mr. Paul Blokhuis, State Secretary for Health, Wellbeing and Sport, Netherlands;
Jean-Laurent Bonnafé, Director and CEO, BNP Paribas;
Denis Duverne, Chairman, AXA;
HRH Princess Dina Mired of Jordan;
François Riahi, CEO, Natixis.
You can access and sign the pledge here: http://www.unepfi.org/psi/tobacco-free-finance/ #TobaccoFree