Divestment GBPHB Petition
Petition to the General Board of Pension and Health Benefits, United Methodist Church
See the Petition below and add your name with the form on the right: to be signed only by United Methodist clergy and UMC employees who are beneficiaries of services provided by the General Board of Pension and Health Benefits.
To the United Methodist Church General Board of Pension and Health Benefits:
We, the undersigned General Board of Pension and Health Benefits participants, ask that the Board disinvest from companies sustaining the illegal Israeli occupation and screen future investments for companies which a) have a physical presence on occupied land; b) build or equip the infrastructure of the occupation; or c) supply the Israeli military with arms,materials or equipment used in the occupation of Palestinian land or attacks on civilians.
United Methodist principles and policies, as well as GBPHB’s own commitment to socially responsible investing, support divesting from the occupation. The Book of Discipline discourages investment in companies “that directly or indirectly support the violation of human rights.” We know that human rights are violated every day in the Palestinian territories through illegal settlements, checkpoints, segregated roads, the separation wall, home demolitions, and military incursions. United Methodist researchers have identified 11 companies in GBPHB’s portfolio that profit from the occupation. Three of these – Caterpillar, Motorola, and Hewlett-Packard – have been repeatedly engaged by United Methodists, but have continued their involvement.
For more than 40 years, United Methodist resolutions have called for a just and lasting peace in the Middle East, including an end to the confiscation of Palestinian land and the construction of settlements. In addition, Palestinian Christians have asked the global church to take action – including divestment – to end the occupation that is devastating their communities. We believe the time has come to make United Methodist pensions and health benefits occupation-free. We hopefully and prayerfully request that GBPHB take this important step.
Sign the Petition today - using the form on the right - if you are a participant in services provided by GBPHB.
Find out more about the companies in United Methodist investment portfolios that are sustaining and profiting from the Israeli occupation of Palestinian land.
Did you know?
From The United Methodist Book of Discipline 2008, P. 492
¶716 Socially Responsible Investments– It shall be the policy of The United Methodist Church that all general boards and agencies, including the General Board of Pension and Health Benefits, and all administrative agencies and institutions, including hospitals, homes, educational institutions, annual conferences, foundations and local churches, shall, in the investment of money, make conscious effort to invest in institutions, companies, corporations, or funds whose practices are consistent with the goals outlined in the Social Principles; and shall endeavor to avoid investments that appear likely, directly or indirectly, to support racial discrimination violation of human rights, sweatshop or forced labor, gambling, or the production of nuclear armaments, alcoholic beverages or tobacco, or companies dealing in pornography. The boards and agencies are to give careful consideration to shareholder advocacy, including advocacy of corporate disinvestment.
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If you have signed the Petition to the General Board of Pension and Health Benefits, thank you! Your signature and many others will let the Board know that the beneficiaries of their investment services do not want those funds to be profiting from the Israeli occupation of Palestinian land.
Please encourage other United Methodists who are beneficiaries of GBPHB services to sign our petition:
• Direct them to our website to sign it online.
• Download the petition with signature sheets to collect support for the petition. Send us the information you gather, as well as any questions or suggestions you may have, at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Dec. 2016 – UMKR has a (slightly) new name: United Methodists for Kairos Response