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Staff protest to remove Facebook CEO’s name from US hospital

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Nurses, doctors and supervisors at the Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital are protesting to remove the name of Facebook CEO from the hospital, as advertisers leave the social network owing to its inaction over the spread of hate speech on its platforms.

The medical fraternity is the new addition to the ongoing #StopHateforProfit campaign against Facebook that has witnessed over 400 subscribers leaving the platform and employees staging walkouts.

According to a report in sfist.com this week, hospital supervisors Gordon Mar and Matt Haney have revived a 2018 proposal to remove the name “Zuckerberg” from the Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital.

“As advertisers leave Facebook in droves due to inaction in the face of hate speech, and employees stage walkouts, it frankly does not make sense for San Francisco’s public hospital to continue to hold Mr. Zuckerberg’s name,” Haney said in a statement to KPIX.

“We deeply appreciate the original donation, but it shouldn’t have ever come with permanent advertising rights on this public hospital that belongs to the people of San Francisco,” Haney added.

In 2015, the hospital added Zuckerberg’s name following a $75 million donation from Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, a pediatrician who used to work at the hospital.

Technically, its full name is Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center, but Chan’s name has mostly been dropped.

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“Whether we like it or not, Zuckerberg’s name is attached to our institution. Looking into a future desperate for institutional funding, our leaders are unlikely to support any effort to change the official name back to San Francisco General Hospital. But that doesn’t mean we, who work here, have to use the Z name or letter,” hospital physician Robert Brody wrote to staff in an email obtained by Stat News.

Several top-notch brands like Disney, Coca Cola, adidas, Walgreens and Starbucks have already pulled out their ads from the social network. Microsoft has suspended its advertising on Facebook and Instagram through August.

Earlier this month, civil right group leaders in the US were left disappointed after meeting Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg, Chief Operating Officer at Facebook, over their concerns related to the spread of hateful content on their platforms.

Sandberg, Zuckerberg and other Facebook executives had met online racial justice group Color of Change, the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, the NAACP Legal Defense Fund and others who started the #StopHateforProfit campaign in June.

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