City Council Speaker Christine Quinn went on the offensive against an offensive billboard in her district. Yesterday, Ms. Quinn sent a letter to Richard Schaps, Chairman and CEO of outdoor advertising company Van Wagner Communications, about a billboard for Wodka Vodka on 27th Street featuring the slogan, “Escort Quality. Hooker Pricing.”
“This billboard has both an offensive and an inappropriate message to all residents of Chelsea. Not only should you remove this billboard from my district, you should end this campaign and remove these ads citywide,” Ms. Quinn wrote. “It is an outrageous misjudgment that you have allowed the display of such an offensive ad.”
In her letter, Ms. Quinn said she was prompted to get involved because her office “received calls and correspondences from residents and organizations who are opposed to this advertisement.” The ad also ran on a billboard by the Brooklyn Bridge and the Bronx, where it was removed.
Van Wagner doesn’t own Wodka, the vodka is manufactured by Panache Beverages. Ms. Quinn told Mr. Schaps she believes Panache envisioned the ad as “a witty marketing tactic.” Wodka has previously used racial stereotypes in their other campaigns.
Read Ms. Quinn’s letter about the billboard below.