Case Study

Breast Cancer Prevention Partners

Manage Federal Legislative Strategy and Implementation to Fight the Environmental Causes of Breast Cancer

About the client

Breast Cancer Prevention Partners is a leading advocacy organization in the public health space, focused on identifying and advocating for the elimination of environmental and other preventable causes of breast cancer.

Breast Cancer Prevention Partners (BCPP) hired us in 2006 to develop their federal advocacy agenda and strategy–after years of successful state advocacy, they were ready to enter the national stage. Upon completion of a strategic planning process, we were hired to serve as their Washington, D.C. office for implementation of their identified goals, and we continue to represent them in D.C. today.

Initially, we identified and assessed BCPP’s potential federal policy goals and priorities in coordination with the organization’s broader strategic planning process. We carefully considered existing Congressional action and interest and gathered information from current and potential stakeholders in the environmental, public health, feminist, and reproductive justice communities. Our three-month research process culminated in a priority-setting retreat to create BCPP’s federal policy agenda. We have conducted a similar process at the start of each Congressional session since then, updating legislative priorities based on careful examination of the political climate.

Key figures in this case study
Clockwise from top left: (1) Nancy Buermeyer, BCPP Senior Policy Strategist, Erin Brockovich, and Ashley Orgain from Seventh Generation after Congressional hearing on the Toxic Substance Control Act. (2) Janet, BCPP’s Program and Policy Director with Fran Drescher and Rep. John Dingell. (3) Nancy (Senior Policy Strategist) testifying on TSCA in 2013. (4) Janet and Daniel Penchina (Raben Group) with Rep. Jan Schakowsky

Since this initial strategic planning process we have worked in partnership with BCPP’s staff to implement their federal policy agenda, focusing on legislation in Congress and regulatory reform through Executive Branch offices. Starting with our success in passing a ban on phthalates in children’s toys in 2008, we have advanced an aggressive environmental health agenda for chemical policy reform that would increase consumer access to safe cosmetics and personal care products, remove bisphenol-A (BPA) and other dangerous chemicals from food and beverage containers, ensure full disclosure of ingredients in cleaning products, and more.

We work with Senators and Representatives from all across the country, other health organizations, environmental health coalitions, and other stakeholders, providing vital D.C.-based knowledge and relationships to help BCPP achieve their goal of protecting the public from dangerous chemicals. We arrange and staff Hill visits for BCPP staff and BCPP-affiliated advocates, we plan and coordinate briefings on the Hill, and we support BCPP staff in testifying at Congressional hearings.

Due to our sustained effort and engagement on their behalf, BCPP has become a strong player in environmental health in Washington, and they are one of the go-to organizations when members of Congress want to move on environmental health issues. For example, our engagement on the Hill resulted in BCPP’s President & CEO and their Senior Policy Strategist being invited to testify in both the House and Senate on the Toxic Substances Control Act. Reform of this act has been a priority for BCPP , and while the legislation that passed in 2015 did not meet the standards BCPP had hoped for, it was still better than it would have been without their advocacy.

Raben is one of the best political consulting firms I’ve ever worked with. Their performance is consistently outstanding. Raben Group staff quickly got up to speed on the very technical aspects of our issue and represent us with expert precision. They are professional, detail-oriented, and skilled with both logistics and substance.

Janet Nudelman BCPP Director of Program and Policy