Unitarian Universalists for Justice in the Middle East (UUJME) has begun a campaign asking UUs to sign a petition to investment giant TIAA-CREF calling on it to divest from companies that profit from Israel’s occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza.
The petition to TIAA-CREF is particularly appropriate for UUs because the staffs of UU congregations and UU organizations have their retirement savings with TIAA-CREF, and because TIAA-CREF prides itself on socially conscious investing.
A statement describing the background of the campaign and the reasons for it can be read here and the petition itself can be signed online. A printed version of the petition can also be accessed here.
With this petition, now circulating among UUs, UUJME is joining the “We Divest” campaign. The We Divest campaign calls on TIAA-CREF to divest from companies directly profiting from the Israeli occupation. The campaign is endorsed by more than 50 peace and justice organizations to-date and is administered by Jewish Voice for Peace, Adalah-NY, the American Friends Service Committee, Grassroots International, and the U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation (see http://www.wedivest.org).
We ask all UUs who recognize the injustice of Israel’s treatment of Palestinians to join us in this campaign. We ask that you sign the petition, gather signatures in your congregation, and share information about the petition with other UUs (for example, by forwarding this announcement as an email message). Signatures can be gathered on the printed version of the petition at coffee hours or at special events such as the showing of a film. The campaign will last one year. Partially or completely filled petitions should be sent to UUJME, P.O. Box 380355, Cambridge, MA 02238.
The suffering of Palestinians from Israel’s occupation of their lands and violations of their most basic human rights continues unabated. As Unitarian-Universalists (UUs), believing in the worth of every human being and compassion in human relations, we cannot put this issue aside. Yes, the issue is controversial, but we must not shy away from controversy in the face of such injustice.