Why are Illinois politicians voting to support Israeli occupation and human rights abuses on your behalf? Let them know you want them to oppose SB 1761!
Last Wednesday, our Senators voted overwhelmingly to pass SB 1761, a bill that would punish companies that protest Israel’s human rights and international law violations by choosing not to do business with Israeli companies - including those based in settlements within the Occupied Palestinian Territories.
This pro-settlement, anti-human rights bill is now headed to the House. If it passes in the coming weeks, Illinois retirement systems will be required to expend resources to blacklist and withdraw investments from companies that make ethical decisions not to do business with Israeli companies because of Israel’s treatment of Palestinians.
We still have two opportunities to stop this. First, while it's in a House Committee for consideration next week, and second, if it comes up for a vote before the full House later in May.
Our representatives either think we agree with their pro-settlement, anti-human rights stance, or they think we're not paying attention. They need to hear from YOU!
Here are three quick ways you can take action to let them know you reject using Illinois retirement money to fund an anti-human rights, pro-occupation political agenda:
1. CALL OR EMAIL YOUR STATE REPRESENTATIVE
- If you don’t know who your state congress members are, use this address lookup here: http://www.elections.il.gov/districtlocator/addressfinder.aspx
- You can find your Representative’s contact information here: http://www.ilga.gov/house/
2. VISIT YOUR STATE REPRESENTATIVE AT HIS/HER DISTRICT OFFICE AND ASK THEM TO OPPOSE SB 1761!
3. SHARE THIS ALERT WITH YOUR FAMILY, FRIENDS AND NEIGHBORS!
- Here is the link to the Facebook event:
Tell your Representative:
- SB 1761 forces state pension fund administrators to blacklist companies that boycott Israel or businesses that operate in “territories under the control of Israel." , which are illegal under international law in what is considered occupied territory by the U.S. government.
- Boycotts to address human rights issues are a First Amendment protected form of speech and association that have an important place in US history as a way for people to address injustices collectively.
- SB 1761 punishes companies that make ethical decisions to boycott Israel's human rights abuses by requiring Illinois retirement funds to expend resources blacklisting, monitoring and withdrawing funds from such companies.
- The Illinois legislature should not further burden the beleaguered pension system with politically motivated investigations. This is being done at a time when Illinois has the lowest credit rating and worst funded pension system among the 50 states.
Opponents of equality for Palestinians are threatened by the growing boycott movement. Let them know that advocacy for human rights must be protected!
Thank you for your action, and stay tuned for more ways to pitch in!
The Illinois Coalition to Protect Academic Freedom and Free Speech
The Illinois Coalition to Protect Academic Freedom and Free Speech was formed in response to anti-boycott legislation introduced in the Illinois State Senate. The Coalition includes the Center for Constitutional Rights, CAIR-Chicago, Jewish Voice for Peace-Chicago, Palestine Solidarity Legal Support, Committee for a Just Peace in Israel and Palestine, Arab-Jewish Partnership for Peace and Justice in the Middle East, Friends of Sabeel: North America, American Friends Service Committee - Chicago, United States Palestinian Community Network, Just Foreign Policy, American Muslims for Palestine, Chicago Area Code Pink, Muslim American Society Public Affairs and Civic Engagement - Chicago.