FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Draw the line at investing in genocide
MEDIA ADVISORY for September 10, 2008
Check back on Thursday for trascripts.
WHEN: Wednesday, September 10, 2008, 10 – 11:30 AM with press availability from 11:30 – 12:15 PM
WHERE: Capitol Hill – Rayburn House Office Building, Room B318
WHAT: Congressional Human Rights Caucus briefing on Genocide-Free Investing
Read Co-Chair Jim McGovern’s (D-MA) introductory remarks.
Featured Panelists Include:
Also, read testimony and commentary by:
- Ben Collins, Sudan Research Analyst, KLD Research & Analytics, Inc
- Nicholas Kristof, New York Times columnist
- Jennifer Levitz of the Wall Street Journal
- Muralikumar Anantharaman of Reuters
Representatives from the federal government are invited to participate in the panel. Representatives from Fidelity and Franklin Templeton declined to participate.
WHY: The movement for targeted divestment from Sudan has begun to highlight the connection of financial institutions to the genocide in Darfur. For example, a surprising number of major financial institutions invest in PetroChina, one of the worst companies helping to fund the genocide in Darfur.
Many Americans are unaware that their family savings and pensions are being invested by their trusted financial institutions in companies that help to fund genocide. As many members of Congress have discovered from their personal experience, it is not only difficult to research but also hard to avoid such investments. This problem is shared by millions of Americans.
In KRC Research’s 2007 study, 71% of respondents said companies should take extreme cases of human rights abuses, such as genocide, into account rather than base investment decisions solely on economic criteria. Further, 200,000 people have objected to financial firms about such problem investments. Reasonable may people disagree about what constitutes socially responsible investing, but few people want their savings to be complicit in genocide.
The briefing will shed light on this problem and start the process for Congress and industry to explore ways to make financial markets more responsive to the American public’s interest in genocide-free investing.
About the ENOUGH Project – ENOUGH is a project of the Center for American Progress to end genocide and crimes against humanity. With an initial focus on the crises in Darfur, Chad, eastern Congo, and northern Uganda, ENOUGH’s strategy papers and briefings provide sharp field analysis and targeted policy recommendations based on a “3P” crisis response strategy: promoting durable peace, providing civilian protection, and punishing perpetrators of atrocities. ENOUGH works with concerned citizens, advocates, and policy makers to prevent, mitigate, and resolve these crises. To learn more about ENOUGH and what you can do to help, go to www.enoughproject.org.