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You Have Never Been More Powerful

There is an end to AIDS. It's you.
April 23, 2017, 11:18pm
D. Dipasupil/ Stringer

This is an opinion piece from Deborah Dugan, the Chief Executive Officer of (RED)

You have never been more powerful.

Yes, you. And you. And you.

Never has there been a better time where you have the opportunity to put your money where your mouth is.

It's said that 90 percent of communication is nonverbal. We communicate in many ways, and what you buy and what you wear is a form of communication. It can speak to what you stand for. Your identity. Your values. Your truth. You wear them. You live them. You breath them.

Every single day you have choices. What you buy can have real social impact. With (RED), it saves lives.

At (RED), we always say that you shouldn't leave your values at the door. We think you shouldn't leave your values at the check-out, either.

You have real power. From (RED), to Warby Parker, to TOMS -- you have so many choices. So the question is no longer, "Why would you?" The question is "Why wouldn't you?"

Here's what I've learned: Give people a great product or an amazing experience to buy -- make it easy for them -- and they will make the choice that delivers social good. Today you reward the companies that do good and punish those that don't. Companies that do good, do well.

(RED)'s founders, Bono and Bobby Shriver, set up (RED) to get the most iconic brands in the world engaged in the fight against AIDS. They set up (RED) because your purchases have power. They set up (RED) because, to quote Bono, this isn't about charity, it's about justice – where you live shouldn't determine whether you live.

Yet today it does.

Every two minutes a teenager is infected with HIV. Yet it is a preventable. AIDS is the leading cause of death among young women worldwide. Yet it is treatable.

Every day, 400 babies are born with HIV. Same thing tomorrow. And the next day.

AIDS no longer has to be a death sentence. One pill a day, for just 30 cents, can help stop the virus being passed on.

This is where you come in. BUY (RED), SAVE LIVES. It's that simple.

Never before have our collective voices and our collective choices been so important.

There is an end to AIDS. It's you.