“Welcome to Yosemite National Park, brought to you by Budweiser!”
Shocking? Get used to it. It will be the new reality if a new quietly delivered National Parks Director’s Order is allowed to stand. The order opens the door to unprecedented corporate sponsorship of national parks, monuments and conservation areas -- in ways that are downright scary.
Auditoriums named after Coca-cola. Tour buses wrapped in Starbucks logos. And if this initiative is allowed to go through, it might not be long before “Wal-Mart’s Yosemite” or “Monsanto’s Everglades” become part of our national fabric.
That’s why we’re going to stop it. Tell the National Park Service to repeal the Director’s Order and keep our parks public!
We really can’t make a big enough deal about this. Parks director Jonathan Jarvis is massively expanding the rules for what used to be called philanthropy. And this could be the new reality by the end of the year.
The order does more than simply allow corporate sponsorship -- it aggressively pursues it, making fundraising a major duty of civil servants and even making securing new sponsorship contracts essential to the career advancement of superintendents and other parks managers!
It’s fights like this that SumOfUs was born to fight. Hundreds of thousands of us fought the opening up of Canadian parkland to Big Oil. We did the same thing in Britain, when the government moved to open up its national parks to fracking. But this move is even more insidious: welcoming corporations into our precious national parks -- one of the last remaining bulwarks against privatization -- with no telling where it will end up.
Keep the Redwoods and the Everglades out of corporate hands. Stop this National Parks order now!