Palestine Labor Abolition Affinity groups Commentary

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May 2, 2024

Pomona faculty vote in favor of divestment from Israeli apartheid, becoming one of the first colleges in the U.S. to do so

64% of Pomona faculty passes resolution to divest from companies on BDS' "divest and exclusion" targets

Undercurrents staff

On May 2, Pomona College faculty became one of the first faculty bodies in the United States to vote in favor of the college’s divestment from Israeli apartheid. The vote came less than a month after the college collaborated with the Claremont Police Department to arrest 19 students for participating in a sit-in to call for divestment from weapons manufacturers and Israel. 

The resolution was representative of over 64% of the faculty at Pomona, as 140 voting faculty members were present at the meeting. In total, 64% voted in favor of divestment, 28% voted against and 9% abstained. 

The faculty voted in favor of Pomona divesting from the 11 “divestment and exclusion targets” which the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement identified: Barclays, CAF, Caterpillar Inc., Chevron, Elbit Systems Ltd., HD Hyundai, Hikvision, Intel, JCB, TKH Security and Volvo. Palestinian civic organizations have identified these targets as the top companies profiting from the ongoing genocide in Gaza.

Prior to the vote, Claremont FJP announced that over 80 Pomona faculty members had signed a petition in support of the resolution. In addition to calling for divestment, the petition endorsed the ASPC student referendum from February, condemned the doxxing of students and encouraged students to “speak out for justice as they have been doing.” 

Following the resolution, Pomona Divest from Apartheid put out a press release titled “Less Than One Month after Riot Police Arrest 20 Students at Pomona College, Pomona College Faculty Become One of the First in the US to Vote Majority in Favor of Divestment from Israeli Apartheid.” 
In January of 2024, the University of Michigan Faculty Senate passed a 38-17 vote for the college to divest from any company invested in the ongoing genocide in Gaza. Outside of the United States, four university faculty unions in Canada have voted in favor of adopting BDS resolutions.

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Pomona admin met with Claremont Police Chief days before Alexander Hall sit-in to plan intervention, emails show

Thanks for reading Undercurrents

Undercurrents reports on labor, Palestine liberation, prison abolition and other community organizing at and around the Claremont Colleges.

Issue 1 / Spring 2023

Setting the Standard

How Pomona workers won a historic $25 minimum wage; a new union in Claremont; Tony Hoang on organizing

Read issue 1