City of Cambridge refuses to "Bank on the Bomb"
April 7, 2016
Mayor Denise Simmons of Cambridge, Massachusetts announced that by unanimous City Council vote on March 21, Cambridge will divest its $1 billion pension fund from "any entities that are involved in or support the production or upgrading of nuclear weapons systems." Mayor Simmons announced divestment at an April 2 MIT symposium, Reducing the Dangers of Nuclear War, organized by The Future of Life Institute, where PSR Board Member and IPPNW Co-president Ira Helfand, MD delivered a plenary talk on the humanitarian impact of nuclear weapons. "Not in our name!", said Mayor Simmons, provoking a standing ovation. "It's my hope that this will inspire other municipalities, companies and individuals to look at their investments and make similar moves."
The Cambridge divestment is part of an international program called "Don't Bank on the Bomb" which is supported by PSR, IPPNW, the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), and many other disarmament groups. Massachusetts Peace Action spearheaded the Cambridge divestment campaign. MIT professor Stephen Hawking said: "If you want to slow the nuclear arms race, then put your money where your mouth is and don't bank on the bomb " According to Susi Snyder, who leads the Don't Bank on the Bomb campaign, "in Europe, over 50 large institutions have already limited their nuclear weapon investments, but this is our first big success in America."
Do you know of a municipality, university, pension fund, or hedge fund that should divest? Then here are some useful tools:
Don't Bank on the Bomb Website
MIT physicist Max Tegmark has created a handy app for figuring out how to divest.
Tegmark is also featured in a snappy 3 minute, 14 second video arguing for divestment, titled Why You Should Care About Nukes.
To investigate why and how nuclear weapons contractors keep a stranglehold on the congressional budget process, read PSR's report: The Persuasive Power of the Nuclear Weapons Industry: Following the Money Trail by Kathryn Deaton
For an example of divestment legislation, check out the City of Cambridge Policy Order