Recent Divestment Articles
- BDS en 2015: Siete formas en que nuestro movimiento marcó nuevos rumbos en contra del colonialismo y el apartheid israelíes
- BDS en 2015: reseña completa
- Irish corporation CRH becomes latest big European firm to exit Israel
- BDS in 2015: Seven ways our movement broke new ground against Israeli settler-colonialism and apartheid
- BDS: full 2015 round-up
- Veolia Fact Sheet
- Companies building the Wall
- Divest Now! A handbook for student divestment campaigns
- Palestinian civil society and human rights organisations mark Palestinian Prisoners’ Day with call for action against Israeli prison contractor G4S
- Derail Israel’s Unlawful A1 Train Project – End International Complicity
- Derail Israel's Unlawful A1 Train Project – End International Complicity
- Veolia and Alstom feel the heat – BNC calls for intensifying pressure!
Divestment calls for the withdrawal of stocks and funds from corporations complicit in the violation of international law and Palestinian rights and ensures that investment portfolios and public funds are not used to finance or purchase products and services from such companies. These campaigns can take advantage of voluntary and mandatory corporate responsibility mechanisms.
There are a variety of funds in which individuals and constituents hold considerable stake and influence such as churches, unions, universities, local authorities and pension funds, and these are the potential sites of strong BDS campaigns. Activists can also pressure public and private sector institutions not to invest in or have dealings with these companies. These efforts raise awareness about the reality of Israel’s policies and encourage companies to use their economic influence to pressure Israel to end its systematic oppression of the Palestinian people.
Individuals can withdraw their personal investments in Israeli companies. However, divestment is similar to sanctions in that it largely relies upon securing certain actions by others (in this instance, share-holders, companies or public authorities withdrawing their investments or contracts) as the majority of BDS campaigners are not in a position to divest significant capital.
Campaigners use tactics such as letter-writing campaigns, lobbying campaigns, media exposure and shareholder activism, whereby individuals buy a small amount of shares in a given company in order to be able to raise the issue of their investments supporting Israeli violations of Palestinian human rights and international law from within the official decision making processes.
During the divestment campaign against South African apartheid, a downward spiral whereby investing in South Africa became too risky a prospect. Divestment as a solidarity strategy can hurt a regime or company economically. More importantly, it forces its target to reflect on why it is being targeted. In this respect divestment advocacy work, even if unsuccessful financially, can bring about changes to the overall climate in which the offender is viewed and raises the profile of the BDS campaign considerably.
For more ideas on how to get involved, see the popular divestment campaigns around Veolia and Alstom, Eden Springs and the Arms Trade.
Recent Divestment Articles
BDS en 2015: Siete formas en que nuestro movimiento marcó nuevos rumbos en contra del colonialismo y el apartheid israelíes
English here 2015 será recordado como el año en que la resistencia popular palestina se extendió por toda la Palestina histórica, y decenas de miles de palestinos y palestinas salieron a las calles para resistir y enfrentar al régimen israelí … Continue reading
English here Enero: Israel muestra creciente preocupación ante el crecimiento del BDS El movimiento estudiantil por la desinversión florece en Estados Unidos El órgano de gobierno estudiantil de la Universidad de California en Davis vota por abrumadora mayoría a favor … Continue reading
BNC salutes the United Methodist Church (UMC) for declaring the five largest Israeli banks off limits for investment and for divesting from the two that it held in its portfolios.
BDS roundup: Lauryn Hill cancels Israel concert and Israeli company loses Olympics security contract
Plus: 20 South African businesses boycott security company over prison links, BDS campaign launched in Egypt, UK bank divests from Israeli arms company, French multinational Veolia sells nearly all Israeli businesses and Quebec union federation adopts BDS