Hundreds of students and staff at the University of Auckland will be rallying today (Wednesday 31st May) to make their opposition to University investment in fossil fuels heard, and to call on Vice Chancellor Stuart McCutcheon to take publicly support fossil fuel divestment
The march, which will begin in the University Quad at 12:30pm, is being run by Fossil Free UoA and Auckland University Students’ Association (AUSA), and comes days after Fossil Free UoA activists staged a 12 hour occupation of the Vice Chancellor’s wing of the University Clocktower.
After gathering in the Quad, students will march to the front of the Clocktower, where speeches will be made by Fossil Free UoA organisers, University academics, AUSA President Will Matthews, and Green Party candidate Chloe Swarbrick.
The rally comes after more than two years of Fossil Free UoA and AUSA campaigning for the University of Auckland Foundation to relinquish its financial interests in fossil fuel companies,and establish an ethical investment policy. During this time both Victoria University and Otago University, and hundreds of institutions across the world have formally divested. In 2016, AUSA brought a petition in favour of divestment to the University Council, which was ignored.
“AUSA has been a partner of Fossil Free UoA on this issue since 2015”, says Matthews
“We have gone through the traditional routes by formally appealing to the Vice Chancellor and the University Council to make a strong statement in favour of divestment, and they’ve ignored us. Now it’s time to come out in force and ask the Vice Chancellor to make a stand”.
“The Vice Chancellor at Victoria University has listened to his students and come out in favour of divestment. It’s time for our Vice Chancellor to let us know who’s side he is on – his students, or the fossil fuel companies.”
The March for Divestment will gather in the University Quad at 12pm. All are welcome to attend.
The Facebook event for the march can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/events/1375538329206869/
For more information contact Will Matthews at 0273201389 or firstname.lastname@example.org