Arts SU stands in solidarity with Palestinian communities and condemns the violence carried out by the state of Israel.
Edit Note: This statement has been edited after clarification around the partnership with Puma.
Arts SU stands in solidarity with Palestinian communities and condemns the violence carried out by the state of Israel. As a Sabbatical Officer team and a Students’ Union, it is our duty to stand on the side of the oppressed and support those under threat.
We stand proudly with Palestine.
As an SU, we have developed an Ethical Partnership Policy for creating and maintaining external partnerships. This was put into place in 2020 and continues to be used today.
We want to reinforce that any antisemitism or acts of violence towards Jewish communities both inside and outside of UAL is always condemned. The Free Palestine movement and the condemnation of the state of Israel is not an excuse for antisemitism. There are people of all faiths who are affected by the violence of the State of Israel.
We also acknowledge that while UAL has a Responsible Investments Policy, they have no Ethical Partnership Policy (palestinecampaign.org 2021) currently in place. We are aware the institution is working towards a set of principles with regards to Ethical Partnerships which is a step in the right direction, but this has not been created as of yet. UAL also has an ongoing partnership with Puma(1), a brand that currently sponsors the Israeli Football Association, which includes teams in illegal Israeli settlements on Occupied Palestinian Territory(2). All Israeli settlements are considered war crimes under international law(3). UAL has a duty to its students to provide industry and progressive opportunities but must also understand the implication of partnering with companies that are not ethical.
We believe that UAL should take the necessary precautions to ensure that the people, brands, and companies with which they associate reflect the values of their staff and students. This is irrespective of financial contributions, and should be considered for all collaborations, guests and partnerships.
We are currently working with the university to implement a robust Ethical Partnership Policy and fully consider future partnerships with all external organisations.
UAL and Arts SU has no place for hate crime towards any community.
If you have been affected by any of these issues, please reach out to any of the following services for support.
1 Palestinecampaign.org 2021: https://www.palestinecampaign.org/university-complicity-database/