Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Text of the motion

The text of the motion to be voted on:

G4S and Veolia out of QMUL

QMSU Notes

  1. There has been an Israeli military occupation in the Occupied Palestinian Territories since 1967, and settlements built there are illegal under international law, according to the UK Government. [1,2]
  2. G4S is a British-Danish private security company which operates globally. A G4S subsidiary provides services and equipment for the Israeli occupation,[3] including contracts with prisons whose inmates include Palestinians held without trial [4] and under-18s. [5] .
  3. In September 2011, a team of UK lawyers sent by the UK Government to investigate Palestinian children in Israeli military custody noted practices including solitary confinement, hooding, and the use of leg irons. [6]
  4. Veolia Environnement is a French multinational infrastructure company. Veolia subsidiaries run transport links connecting Israel to the settlements. A Veolia subsidiary runs and operates the Tovlan landfill in the occupied West Bank which is used to dump waste both from within Israel and from settlements. [7]
  5. A Freedom of Information request to QMUL has revealed that Veolia carry out waste removal at the Whitechapel campus on a rolling quarterly contract, and that G4S provide a service to the Finance department and the Library under a contract which expires on 4th June 2013.
  6. That in 2005, over 170 Palestinian civil society groups called for an international campaign of boycotting, divestment and sanctions (BDS) in defence of Palestinian human rights. [8]
  7. a) That the National Union of Students encourages students to campaign against Veolia. [9]
    b) That the University of London Union voted to support BDS and “pressure University of London universities and affiliate students’ unions to divest from Israel and from companies directly or indirectly supporting the Israeli occupation and apartheid policies”. [10]
    c) That the Universities and Colleges Union supports the BDS campaign. [11]
    d) That the Trades Unions Congress calls for a “campaign for disinvestment by companies associated with the occupation”. [12]
  8. That the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the occupied Palestinian territories specifically named G4S and Veolia as companies which “should be boycotted” for their role in Israel's occupation. [13]

QMSU Believes:

  1. A peaceful and just settlement in the Middle East is essential.
  2. That our college should not, therefore, work with G4S and Veolia, which support the occupation through their activities.

QMSU Resolves:

  1. To strongly urge QMUL to allow its contracts with G4S and Veolia to expire and to find different providers.
  2. To include information on its website explaining its position on G4S and Veolia until, at the earliest, QMUL ends its contracts with these companies.
  3. For QMSU not to take out any contracts with G4S or Veolia in the future, until they have completely stopped providing services for the Israeli occupation.