Brown Divest Coal will be holding their final rally of the school year at 1 p.m. They have been working all year to get the Corporation to actually vote on divesting from the so-called “filthy fifteen” coal companies, but President Paxson recently hinted that such a vote likely would not take place in May. Participants in this rally hope to change that. Brown Divest Coal has held a couple of rallies before, and their year-long efforts have yielded a 3,000-signature petition supporting divestment and endorsements from UCS and billionaire hedge fund manager Tom Steyer.
As it’s their last public event of the year, it’s your last chance to make your presence felt if you support the cause. If you don’t support it, well, go about your day as planned. With few classes still meeting during Reading Period, you can probably expect a big crowd on the Main Green (as of Thursday night, 117 were listed as attending). For more information, check out the rally’s Facebook event or Brown Divest Coal’s web site.
Late this morning, students lay head to toe across the Main Green as part of Brown’s leg of the national movement to divest from sporting goods giant Adidas due to unfair labor practices. Otherwise known as “badidas” (get it?), this national movement, which has successfully led to divestment from Adidas at Oberlin and Cornell (with several more having agreed to cut contracts), was formed in response to Adidas’ refusal to pay $1.8 million in severance owed to workers in Indonesia, among other offenses.
According to the Brown Student Labor Alliance website, though University administrators have addressed Adidas about its violations of the University’s vendor code of conduct, Adidas has not made any changes, and no definitive action has been made to cut Brown’s contract.
Decked out in workout gear, students held up signs reading slogans protesting Adidas’ practices, and encouraging the University to take action and terminate its contract with the company. And while most students might have other things on their mind in this week of weeks, you can learn more about “Brown Cut Adidas” and take a look at its petition here.
At noon, demonstrators from Brown Divest Coal will be taking their year-long campaign to the Main Green. Just a few days after hosting environmentalist Bill McKibben P’16 on campus, the organization will be taking its message directly to President Paxson as it hopes she will sign on to an effort to, according to the campaign’s Facebook page, “divest the Brown endowment from the 15 most environmentally destructive coal companies,” otherwise known as the “Filthy 15.” Coal “contributes to climate change and causes 13,000 preventable deaths each year,” says Emily Kirkland ’13, Brown Divest Coal’s Director of Media Relations. She expects anywhere from “50 to 75″ people to attend the rally, but there may be even more judging by the 126 who are “attending” the rally’s Facebook event.
Jason Hu is a member of EmPower.
Brunonia went to Washington this past weekend, as students from the Rhode Island Student Climate Coalition (RISCC) participated in protests at the White House against the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.
The pipeline is set to bring tar sands from Canada down to Texas, Hannah LeBourgeois ’15 said, and opponents have criticized it as a setback in environmental sustainability as well as independence from fossil fuels. Go here to learn more about the proposed pipeline.
RISCC—which includes schools throughout Rhode Island, and whose Brown chapter is a member of EmPower—had collected student signatures on a large canvas which it carried at Washington.
Images courtesy Lolly Lim ’12 and Jacqueline Ho ’14.
At 4:30 yesterday afternoon, members of Occupy Providence met at Burnside Park to march up the hill to Brown’s Main Green. Protesters carried signs, played make-shift instruments, and chanted things like “we are the 99%, you are the 99%” and “banks got bailed out, we got sold out.” Passing drivers honked their horns and cheered out their windows in support. With Brown Police standing by, Occupy Providence paraded under Faunce Arch and filed into a packed Salomon DeCiccio Auditorium to attend the Teach-In for Occupy College Hill. Occupy Providence has since released its first mission statement to the public.
Brown students came out to the Main Green for College Student Walk Out Day, an event inspired by Occupy Wall Street
If you passed by the Main Green yesterday around noon you probably noticed a large circle of people gathered on the grass. Over 75 students, faculty and local residents all came out in solidarity with College Student Walk Out Day, in which students across the country skipped class to gather in public places at 12 pm. The stated purpose of the gathering was to discuss future plans for a growing offshoot of Occupy Wall Street called Occupy Providence. The conversation started out with discussion on the Occupy Wall Street protests and later shifted to a debate on whether or not the Brown community should join forces with Occupy Providence. There was also the option of creating separate Occupy Brown or Occupy College Hill organizations. Another gathering was held at 2 pm on campus.