Last week activists, including GX’s program coordinator, Dalit Baum, challenged Hewlett Packard shareholders outside the annual meeting of Hewlett Packard (HP) in Santa Clara, CA.
The protest, including a vigil at the entrance to the AGM, launched a campaign calling on HP to stop supporting the Israeli occupation of Palestine, as well as Israeli war crimes and human rights violations, and to pull out of its biometric ID projects that facilitate ethnic segregation and discriminations.
HP provides on-going support and maintenance to a biometric ID system (called BASEL) installed in Israeli checkpoints in the occupied West Bank. These checkpoints deprive Palestinians freedom of movement in their own land and allow the Israeli military to grant or deny special privileges to the civilians under its control. HP is also working with the Israeli government to manufacture and distribute a biometric ID system for all Israeli citizens, which categorizes citizens by their ethnic background and serves to discriminate against Arab citizens.
By leafleting and speaking with the shareholders entering the meeting, the group informed them of HP’s activities and risks to their stock price.
Next month, the United Methodist Church will hold a vote in its General Conference on a resolution to divest from HP as well as from two other companies which are directly complicit in Human Rights violations in the occupied West Bank: Motorola Solutions and Caterpillar.
Following years of failed attempts to engage with HP, it is time to send a message to all responsible and moral investors to withdraw their investments in these companies. Help the church take this important step to align its investment policies with its ethical stance against the occupation and endorse the resolution.
Director of Organizing