Today, six GU Fossil Free members attempted to walk into the full body meeting of the Board of Directors. They were met with a resounding ‘no’ by university administrators. Because we believe that we deserve a seat at the table when they discuss the proposal we have been crafting and refining for over two years, we decided to read out and mic check the following statement:
“Hello Members of the Board of Directors,
We are the members of GU Fossil Free. We have felt the need to come before all of you today in order to ensure that each and every one of you hears from us why Georgetown must divest fully from the 200 companies in our proposal. We met with five of you last night, and are incredibly grateful for your thoughtful and authentic engagement. Thank you, again. It is because we sincerely respect and appreciate the time and energy each of you devote to building a better Georgetown, and because of the careful thought this body is dedicating to an issue that we students have worked tirelessly since January 2013 to bring to this table, that we believe all of you deserve to hear the student voices driving this movement.
Divestment is fundamentally about social justice. It is a reverberating act of solidarity with marginalized communities bearing the brunt of the serious harms associated with fossil fuel extraction and global climate change, and with generations to come. As a university that takes to heart its roots in Catholic social teaching and Jesuit identity, Georgetown has a commitment to these communities and to our human family. By continuing to profit from an industry so implicated in systemic injustice, we are not only condoning death and destruction–we are enabling and perpetuating it. Moral consistency demands that we pull our financial and political support from all of these companies.
You all will receive or have received a letter from us in which we reiterate that full divestment from these 200 companies is a reasonable compromise for an endowment that is currently invested without any ethical screens. What we are asking for is the first step; full divestment has always been and will continue to remain our priority.
We close by reminding you that justice delayed is justice denied. The fossil fuel divestment movement is picking up steam worldwide and Georgetown has the opportunity to be a moral leader if it acts now. We urge you today to vote YES on FULL divestment at your next Board meeting in the early summer. We are here to show our faces to you, to ask you from the depth of our hearts to consider fully and completely this issue, and to make the right decision come summer.
Thank you very much.”