Senators for community colleges reject divestment

Student representatives from the state’s 112 community colleges — representing 2.1 million students — rejected an Israel divestment resolution at a general assembly gathering last week in Southern California, according to a tweet posted shortly after the vote.

Meeting May 1-3 at the Ontario Convention Center, the Student Senate for California Community Colleges voted 44-24 against the measure, with six abstentions, according to the Twitter feed of the Victor Valley College Associated Student Body.

“StandWithUs applauds the general assembly … for their decisive rejection of a resolution to divest from companies doing business with Israel,” the pro-Israel advocacy and education nonprofit wrote on its website.

A student from Los Angeles Valley College introduced the resolution, “Divest from Companies Profiting from Human Rights Abuses in Palestine,” and Students for Justice in Palestine at LAVC released a statement supporting it.

The resolution called Israel’s presence in the West Bank a “brutal occupation” with “characteristics of colonialism and apartheid.” It also claimed some companies aid in Israel’s “escalation of systematic ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from their homes.”

Though California Community Colleges is the largest educational system in the United States, it generally has been student senates at four-year universities that have voted on Israel divestment resolutions. The student senate at Stanford University passed one in February; similar resolutions this year were rejected at U.C. Santa Barbara and overturned at U.C. Davis. — j. staff