Berkeley to divest from service providers of US immigration enforcement

Via Daily Cal | By Alicia Kim 

Berkeley City Council voted unanimously Tuesday evening to divest from all U.S. Immigration and and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, service providers.

The initiative, authored by Councilmembers Ben Bartlett and Kate Harrison, is a continuation of the council’s March resolution to divest city funds from companies involved in constructing a border wall between the United States and Mexico, as ordered by President Donald Trump. This resolution is also part of the council’s efforts to establish other “sanctuary city” policies.

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Victory! Philadelphia Will Stop Investing in Private Prisons

Philadelphia_City_Hall_920_677_80Via Next City | By Rachel Dovey

The Philadelphia Board of Pensions and Retirement voted last week to divest its roughly $1.2 million in stock from the private prison industry, citing civil rights abuses on the part of companies like the GEO Group, CoreCivic and G4S.

The industry has deep and long-standing ties with the region, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports. George Wackenhut, a former FBI agent from Upper Darby, founded the GEO Group, and the company now manages upwards of 20 facilities in Pennsylvania.

“This decision is about doing what is right and just,” City Councilwoman Blondell Reynolds Brown said, according to the Inquirer. “I am proud that the board has taken this tangible step to ensure that the city will no longer invest its pension dollars into an industry with an exhaustive track record of civil rights abuses.”

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Breaking: Reed College Students occupy building demanding divestment from Wells Fargo

15251158_GVia Fox 12 Oregon

Students are sleeping in the Reed College administration building in protest of the school’s primary bank.

The group Reedies Against Racism is demanding that the school stop banking with Wells Fargo.

According to the group, about 25 people have been sleeping in the administration building for the past two days.

The students said they are protesting the school’s use of Wells Fargo because of the bank’s involvement in private prisons, the support of the Dakota Access Pipeline and the recent investigation into the company’s use of fake accounts to make money.

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Philadelphia Board of Pensions votes to divest from private prisons

Via Pensions & Investments | By James Comtois

Philadelphia Board of Pensions and Retirement has decided to divest from private prisons, confirmed Christopher R. DiFusco, chief investment officer for the $4.8 billion pension system.

At their Thursday meeting, board trustees voted 6-1 in favor of divesting from the private prison industry. Specifically, the board will divest from three private prison companies: GEO Group, G4S and CoreCivic (formerly Corrections Corp. of America).

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Day of the Dead National Week of Action, Oct. 28 – Nov. 4

unnamed.pngStop the Deaths, End Detention

Since 2003, 176 people have died in immigrant detention, including 12 deaths in Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) custody this past year. From October 28 to November 4, DWN members and allies will mark the Latin American Holiday, Día de los Muertos or Day of the Dead, with our second national week of action.

The Day of the Dead National Week of Action aims to honor the lives of those who have died in immigrant detention, as recent investigations have found that inadequate medical care has contributed to numerous deaths in detention. This year, 15 cities will take part in the week of action through vigils, artistic expressions and mobilizations. Together, we will highlight the untimely deaths of 22 people who have died in immigrant detention since Oct 1, 2015, while amplifying the voices and leadership of those who have been directly impacted by the immigration detention system.

Our national demand is an immediate review of the 22 deaths that occurred in ICE custody in fiscal years ‘16 and ‘17, and publication of these reviews by December 1, 2017.

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Philly pension board dropping private prison stocks

 

The Philadelphia Board of Pensions and Retirement voted Thursday to withdraw its investments in the for-profit prison industry, which has been dogged for years by health and safety problems.

Francis Bielli, the board’s executive director, said the board voted 6-1 in favor of liquidating the $1.2 million worth of stock it held in three companies: the GEO Group, CoreCivic, and G4S.
The funds will be routed to other investments over several months.
In August, the Inquirer and Daily News published a report on the perils of the for-profit prison industry, which has been paid billions by the federal government since 1997 to house more than 34,000 inmates every year.
multi-year study by the Justice Department’s Office of Inspector General found that for-profit prisons had higher rates of violence and lockdowns, and provided poorer access to medical care, than government-run prisons.
“This decision is about doing what is right and just,” said City Councilwoman Blondell Reynolds Brown. “I am proud that the board has taken this tangible step to ensure that the city will no longer invest its pension dollars into an industry with an exhaustive track record of civil rights abuses.”

Philly Pension Divests from Private Prisons

Councilwoman Reynolds Brown Issues Statement Regarding the Philadelphia Board of Pensions and Retirement Decision to Divest from Private Prisons

Today, the Philadelphia Board of Pensions and Retirement voted to divest from private prisons.  The decision follows reported incidents of alleged human rights abuses across the private prison industry that have drawn health and safety complaints across the nation.

According to the Board of Pensions, there have been documented instances of dangerous and unhealthy living conditions, and human rights violations in many of these facilities nationwide. Data indicates that there were 126,000 inmates housed in approximately 130 private prisons operating in 30 different states where federal investigators have found far higher rates of security and safety incidents.

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