German campaigners at Commerzbank

Jogger warten in der Bank - Jérôme PerayaOn the occasion of the 100th anniversary conference of the International Fellowship of Reconciliation campaigners held a protest at Commerzbank in Konstanz.  Commerzbank is the second largest investor in nuclear weapons components and delivery systems in Germany. Nobel Peace Prize laureate Mairead McGuire took part in a die-in in front of the bank, while Right Livelihood Award winner Alyn Ware joined the jogger group that entered the bank with a letter to the chair of the Commerzbank board. 

You can find more photos of the event here, and more information here.

This report provides the basis for coordinated campaigning to discourage financial institutions from investing in nuclear weapons companies. Taking action can involve meeting with bank representatives, organizing protests outside their headquarters or branches, raising public awareness, finding allies and promoting legislation prohibiting investment. You can also use social media, like twitter.

Download the Campaigner Guide.

Send a message to financial institutions!

I’ve decided to divest, what now? 

Why Campaign on Divestment?

Open the debate! Disinvestment campaigns attract media attention and re-open discussions as to what is acceptable and what is not. Showing that there is less interest in financing the bomb shows that nuclear weapons are less legitimate. This can help to sway politicians and civil servants and reactivate the debate about nuclear weapons in a different way.

Build new norms! Once financial institutions change their policies to ban investment in nuclear weapons, they start developing new investment standards and norms. Financial institutions represent a huge influence on producers of nuclear weapons, and have the power to directly influence and engage with producers of nuclear weapons. Working with financial institutions is a powerful way to directly influence companies practices and demonstrate that nuclear weapons are not a feasible long term business interest.

Reach the whole of society! This activity lets you reach out to financial institutions, ministries of finance, companies, ethical advisor firms- a whole new range of actors to generate and demonstrate whole of society support for a ban!

Everyone can act! Often, nuclear weapons are a vague and distant idea- they are not real or connected to day to day life, and acting for abolition feels like something for policy experts only. But almost everybody has a bank account. By building a “not with my money!” feeling, we can encourage people to contact their banks or pension funds and take useful action to ban (investments) in the bomb. It brings the issue closer to people’s day to day life, with an opportunity to act.

Get creative! This type of campaigning is focused, targeted, empowering and effective. Divestment efforts also give you a chance to get creative and use an all inclusive approach to reach out and speak out against nuclear weapons.

No party excuses! Divestment efforts are not tied to one political party or political side of the spectrum. Divestment is a way to reach across party divides and build broad inclusive relationships in the campaign to outlaw and eliminate nuclear weapons.

It Works! In recent years the financial industry has become increasingly aware of the importance of Socially Responsible Investment (SRI) practices. Since these SRI go beyond legal obligations, campaigners can demonstrate success for the cause before any legal international framework compels financial institutions to act.

Engage the Public

Engage the Media

Engage the Government

Engage Financial Institutions

Take Action for Divestment

his report provides the basis for coordinated campaigning to discourage financial institutions from investing in nuclear weapons companies. Taking action…

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