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Stanford Takes Lead on Conflict Minerals Issue: Trustees Adopt Groundbreaking Investment Policy

Stanford Takes Lead on Conflict Minerals Issue: Trustees Adopt Groundbreaking Investment Policy

Responding to a student-led initiative of Stanford STAND, Stanford becomes the nation’s first university to adjust its investment policy in light of conflict minerals’ role in the ongoing mass atrocities in the DRC.

Stickers were used as part of an awareness campaign on the Stanford campus


PRLog (Press Release)Jun 20, 2010 – Stanford STAND: A Student Coalition to End and Prevent Genocide and Mass-Atrocities is delighted to report that the Stanford University Board of Trustees has voted in favor of the adoption of a new proxy voting guideline regarding the “conflict minerals” that sustain armed groups in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), as Stanford announced Friday June 18 at http://news.stanford.edu/news/2010/june/conflict-mineral …. This vote makes Stanford University the first major institution to adopt an investment policy with respect to conflict minerals. Such early leadership on a major new investment responsibility issue is unprecedented in the University’s history.
The guideline states that the University will:

“…vote in favor of well-written and reasonable shareholder resolutions that ask companies for reports on their policies and efforts regarding their avoidance of conflict minerals and conflict mineral derivatives.”

The term “conflict minerals” refers to the minerals that come from illegally controlled mines in the eastern part of the DRC. Civilians are caught in the deadly middle as armed militias struggle for control of mines and smuggling routes. According to the International Rescue Committee, over 5.4 million deaths have occurred as a result of the conflict. What’s more, because of the widespread use of sexual violence against local populations as an intimidation tactic, the DRC has been called the rape capital of the world. Fueling this conflict is the lucrative process of mining and trading minerals like tantalum, tungsten, tin, and gold.

Innovative university policies brought on by STAND student activism

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