Israel boycott ban

17th February, 2016

People take part in a pro-Palestinian demonstration in Paris, calling for a boycott of Israel, Oct 2015 Getty Images

People take part in a pro-Palestinian demonstration in Paris, calling for a boycott of Israel, Oct 2015 Getty Images

The latest controversial idea from the government is to ban local councils, public bodies and even some university student unions from boycotting “unethical” companies. This could mean that they will lose the freedom to refuse to buy goods and services from companies involved in Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank, the arms trade, fossil fuels, tobacco products and a whole host of other unsavoury activities. You can read about it here:

The Independent: Israel boycott ban: Shunning Israeli goods to become criminal offence for public bodies and student unions

The Guardian: Councils and NHS trusts to be blocked from boycotting Israeli products

I believe that this is a gross attack on democratic freedoms. Not only is it right to boycott unethical companies but it is our right to do so. It should also be the right of local councils and public bodies that we have elected to make their own decisions, free of government control.

But what do you think? I would love to know.

Do you agree with Jo that local councils and public bodies should have the right to buy, or not buy, good and services from whoever the choose?

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What do you think?

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