For colleges and universities, being in compliance with the Nuclear Ban Treaty means:
- Not undertaking any research that supports the maintenance or upgrading of nuclear weapons.
- Not holding any investments in any of the nuclear weapons companies.
- Deciding not to buy any of their products or services in future – unless they stop making nuclear weapons.
Before a college or university is likely to take the first step, there will almost certainly need to be student and/or faculty group that is committed to pushing this through. It may take nothing more than a single letter to the President or Dean of the college, it may take many meetings and letters with other key officials, and it may take a concerted effort among students and faculty to raise this issue to an appropriate level where it can be taken seriously.
Once an institution is ready to move on this issue, there are 3 basic steps to Treaty Compliance:
- The first step for a college or university is to make the commitment to go through the process of being Treaty Compliant. This will require, at a minimum, a careful evaluation of what is involved and a formal decision by a President or a Governing Board to proceed to step 2.
- Once the governing body of an institution of higher education has decided it wants to be Treaty Compliant, it will probably need to appoint a committee to consider whether any prohibited research is taking place, whether there are any investments in the companies involved in nuclear weapons or products being purchased by the university from those companies (and if so, what alternative suppliers are available).
- The final step is a formal (and published) policy confirming the decision to be in compliance with the Treaty by prohibiting research which supports the continued existence of nuclear weapons, divestment of endowment or other funds from nuclear weapons companies and a commitment to boycott their products until they are no longer in the nuclear weapons business. These should be accompanied by letters to the CEOs of those companies informing them of this decision.
Colleges and universities who choose to become Treaty Compliant are then invited to ‘take it to the next level’ by sharing what you have done:
…with other institutions of higher education.
…with national academic and professional research bodies.
…with the city and state within which you are located.