AMS asks XR UBC to reconsider hunger strike

On January 6, 2020, Extinction Rebellion UBC (XR UBC) is planning to begin a hunger strike unless UBC commits to a full divestment from fossil fuels by the end of 2019. While we are supportive of the push for UBC to fully divest from fossil fuels, the AMS is against XR UBC performing a hunger strike that puts the health and wellbeing of students into harm.

The AMS supports the work of all student groups who advocate for a sustainable future. Groups such as UBCC350 have successfully gotten UBC to divest the land revenue portion of the Endowment Fund and have advocated for UBC to study how to legally fully divest from fossil fuels as soon as possible. We also applaud the UBC Board of Governors’ efforts to examine how they can legally make the decision to divest the Endowment Fund from fossil fuels in the shortest time possible. We recognize that there is a lot more work to be done and the AMS encourages students to continue to push UBC to work immediately towards its critical climate commitments. We, however, are asking XR UBC to consider other ways to pressure the university that won’t potentially endanger student health and well-being.

Should the hunger strike proceed, the AMS will work with UBC to provide the necessary supports to monitor students’ health and ensure no student suffers long-term, irreparable health problems.

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