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News :: Organizing
Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein joins Divest UMass protesters on campus
20 Apr 2016
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AMHERST – As the University of Massachusetts Fossil Fuel Divestment Campaign continues to call for a full divestment from fossil fuel, it has shifted to sit-outs outside of Whitmore, rallies and a meeting with President Marty Meehan Thursday afternoon.

Wednesday is day seven of the student action. Last week, for five days, they occupied the Whitmore Administration Building and 32 students volunteered to be arrested.

They have received support from state senators, many campus departments as well as Green Party Presidential candidate Jill Stein, who will be joining with students for a 3 p.m. Wednesday rally.

Stein was slated to be on campus for a panel discussion Wednesday but is coming earlier to join with them, said Divest UMass spokesman Filipe Carvalho.

The panel titled "Orange, Red & Green Climate Justice, Corporate Power & the Fight for a 99% Future" features Stein, Divest UMass members and Verizon workers.

Verizon union members have been on strike since last week and without a contract for eight months.

The discussion is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. in room 804 of the Campus Center.

Meehan, who will be on campus Thursday and Friday, agreed to meet with a few students from Divest UMass, according to an email from spokesman Robert Connolly.

Last week, Meehan and Board of Trustee chairman Victor Woolridge sent a message to students that they agreed "to advocate for the divestment and prohibition of direct investments by the university's endowment in fossil fuel companies."

They further agreed to place the subject on the agenda for consideration at a trustees meeting June 15.

But students said they have been asking for a commitment for four years and this didn't go far enough.

They are calling for an "actionable commitment."

Carvalho said the group remains optimistic and is gratified by the support of all who have turned out and continue to support them.

They also want to celebrate Meehan's support for divestment but they still want a commitment that the system will divest by 2021 and present a plan for that over the next two months.
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