Get your uni to come clean !

A new academic year has just begun and student campaigners at University College London (UCL) are starting to kick a fuss to Disarm UCL again. Despite the decision of the UCL Council to move towards ethical investment UCL still currently holds £884 000 worth of shares in arms trader Cobham plc.

We think this is a disgrace. How serious is UCL about ethical investment when it keeps clinging on to the arms shares? 

The first thing we did was to get a stall at Freshers Fayre last week to tell everyone new to UCL about the arms investments. Turns out the majority of the Freshers and new graduate students we talked to had already heard about UCLs arms investments and the Disarm UCL campaign. We took this as an indication that our campaign is going well Continue reading “Get your uni to come clean !”

Diary of an anti-arms trade campaigner in exile

The reason why I have not been blogging for ages is simple:

I haven’t been around. Here are a few lines on the difficulties of being an anti-arms trade campaigner in exile:

Three months ago I left London for a research trip to Ukraine and that’s when things really started to get going:

Two days before my departure University College London, my university we had so desperately tried to persuade to ditch its shares in arms companies, quite unexpectedly announced that it wants to develop an ethical investment policy.

What an incredible campaigning victory!

Continue reading “Diary of an anti-arms trade campaigner in exile”

Global university without a global conscience

Just to let you know that I am now blogging against the arms trade on the New Statesman website :)))

They have just put my comment piece “Global university without a global conscience” up on their Campus Radicals blog.

It has attracted quite a few comments already and was nicely timed to go live just before the UCL Council tomorrow looks at the issue of an ethical investment policy. Hopefully the UCL Council will listen to the voices of over 1200 UCL students, staff and alumni and ditch the arms shares.

1,000 UCL students tell provost to ditch arms shares

UCL Provost Malcolm Grant was yesterday presented with a petition signed by over 1,000 UCL staff and students calling on him to sell UCL’s shares in an arms
company. The provost also received a hand-signed copy of a book by UCL alumnus Richard Wilson, in which he describes how his sister died as a result of the arms trade.

Richard Wilson, his book Titanic Express and famous UCL alumnus Gandhi

Richard Wilson is just one of the UCL graduates who has given his backing to
Disarm UCL, which calls for the College to divest from arms trader Cobham plc
and to adopt an ethical investment policy. Continue reading “1,000 UCL students tell provost to ditch arms shares”

Disarm UCL campaign going strong

It’s been a while since I last updated you guys on how things are going at the Disarm UCL campaign.

As you might know University College London (UCL) is currently the biggest university investor in the arms trade in the UK. Most UCL students, staff and alumni think this is a disgrace. I am one of them.

We had a meeting last night and it was good to see everyone so full of ideas and enthusiasm for the campaign so close to the end of the academic year.

Despite the fact that most of us are coping with very stressful exams and essay deadlines the campaign is still going strong. We have a new alumni coordinator who got 30 UCL alumni to write to the UCL Provost to tell him to ditch the arms shares via pledgebank. Well done, Dan! And thanks to everyone who wrote letters.
Continue reading “Disarm UCL campaign going strong”

UCL UNION votes to support the Disarm UCL campaign !

Hey,
I’ve been so busy lately that I forgot to tell you about this really cool campaigning success we had at Disarm UCL last week:

Quick reminder: we are campaigning to get UCL to sell its disgraceful 1.5 million pounds worth of arms shares. We tried to get UCL Union support on this. And now we’ve got it 🙂

We presented our motion for ethical investment at the UCL Union Council meeting and they voted overwhelmingly in favour of our motion ! The motion states that the Union will fully support our campaign to get UCL to divest its’ shares in arms companies Cobham plc and Smiths Group. Read the details here.

This is fantastic news for us. Continue reading “UCL UNION votes to support the Disarm UCL campaign !”

tobacco – bad; arms – good

The ethical investment policy of my university (University College London – UCL) bans investments in tobacco companies. However it does not ban investing over 1,5 million pounds worth of shares in arms companies.

How did this happen?

Here’s one version of events:

Confidential insights into UCLs investment decisions

If you think UCL should stop investing in arms companies please sign here!

Many thanks to Scary Boots for the cartoon!