Northwestern not directly invested in corporations named in divestment resolution, University says


Nathan Richards/Daily Senior Staffer

Off-campus senator Marcel Hanna, a Weinberg sophomore, speaks during Associated Student Government’s marathon debate on the Northwestern Divest-sponsored resolution Wednesday night. The resolution passed with 24 votes for, 22 against and three abstentions.

Olivia Exstrum, Campus Editor

Northwestern does not directly hold shares in the six corporations cited in NUDivest’s Associated Student Government resolution, University spokesman Al Cubbage told The Daily on Thursday in a statement.

In the statement, Cubbage said the University works with firms that invest in different financial mediums on its behalf.

University administrators and the Board of Trustees Investment Committee “will review (the) resolution thoughtfully,” Cubbage said in the statement, adding NU’s vice president for investments and executive vice president are open to meeting with students on the issue.

The resolution, which passed with 24 votes in favor, 22 votes against and three abstentions, calls for the University to divest from corporations that its authors say profit from the violation of Palestinians’ human rights. It also asks for the University to provide greater transparency about its investment decisions and for ASG to form an investment transparency task force.

The Investment Office does not release information on NU’s investments.

“There are plenty of mutual funds and money managers that use socially responsible investment policies,” said Weinberg junior Noah Whinston, who helped author the resolution, in response to Cubbage’s statement. “Even aside from the human rights violations against Palestinians, there’s also been a call for a socially responsible investment policy to apply to many other things.”

Cubbage also clarified that no student tuition is used for endowment purposes. Some NUDivest members have said in the past that they support divestment because they do not want their tuition money to be complicit in human rights violations.

In response to the vote, which was made early Thursday morning after a marathon debate, NUDivest issued a statement on its website calling the resolution’s passage a “step in the right direction” and saying students will continue to take measures toward divestment, including that of “any corporation found to be complicit in human rights violations of Palestinians in the future.”

NU Coalition for Peace, a movement that opposes divestment and favors a two-state solution in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, also issued a statement online on Thursday afternoon.

“While the members of the Coalition are disappointed by the outcome of the ASG vote, we are proud of the courage demonstrated by all who spoke at Wednesday’s Senate meeting,” the coalition stated.

The statement said the “razor-thin” vote margin is proof the resolution is not representative of the views of the entire student body. Coalition for Peace plans to “continue to identify pathways to self-determination and human rights for both people through a two-state solution.”

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Previous stories on this topic:

    After more than five hours of debate, Associated Student Government senate narrowly passes NUDivest resolution
    Students form campaigns for, against divestment in Israel-Palestine conflict