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Tuesday, May 30, 2006
Canadian Union Adopts Arab Boycott of Israel
By Fred Taub,
President, Divestment Watch

Note: Divestment Watch warns against doing business or communicating with this union unless you are trained in and are familiar with US Antiboycott Laws, as well as federal Antiboycott compliance reporting regulations and procedures.

   While Divestment Watch (www.DivestmentWatch.org) previously reported the British 'National Association of Teachers in Higher Education' (NATFHE) union has adopted an academic boycott of Israel and will absorb the Association of University Teachers (AUT) which has previously rejected an Academic boycott after accepting it for a short time (See Divestment Watch Article ), another union under the British Empire, this one in Canada, has adopted the Arab boycott of Israel, and with its proximity to the US, American businesses need to be aware of this before entering into business with the Canadian union, as they may find themselves in violation of US laws.

   On May 27th, 2006, CBC News in Canada reports CBC News in Canada reports as follows: "The Ontario division of Canada's largest union has voted to support an international campaign that is boycotting Israel over its treatment of Palestinians. Delegates to the Canadian Union of Public Employees Ontario convention in Ottawa voted overwhelmingly Saturday to support the campaign until it sees Israel recognizing the Palestinians' right to self-determination. The Ontario group represents more than 200,000 workers."

   The "international campaign" mentioned is the Arab boycott of Israel. US law states that no US persons may engage into an official foreign-government sanctioned boycott against a nation friendly to the US. Congress created the law to prevent people from using boycotts to create de facto foreign policy, which Congress affirmed as its domain.

   With such a large number or members, Boycott Watch advises US companies to take precautions before conducting business with this union or any subsidiary union or subsidiary organization, as not to even accidentally enter into situation where an agreement or conversation may result in violation of US Antiboycott laws which carries very heavy penalties.

   "Boycott Watch is not calling for a boycott. We report and advise, but we do not take sides in boycotts unless the boycott is blatantly anti-American or violates US laws, as in this case." said Fred Taub, President of Boycott Watch. "Because of the nature of US Antiboycott laws, US companies must perform appropriate due-diligence work before engaging in any and all business dealings and communications with this union, including making sure all correspondence with the Canadian union is proper and not possibly violating US laws. It is advisable not to speak to the Canadian union whatsoever unless the US person in the conversation is knowledgeable about US Antiboycott laws and what can and can not be said, as well as what may need to be reported to the US Department of Commerce regarding such dealings. This is not a simple law, so companies may therefore choose just not to do business with the union or even answer the phone when they call just to play it safe."

   Taub continued: "Until now, Antiboycott compliance was an issue only dealt with by Middle-East import-export specialists who know how to specifically avoid such problems. Now, everyone needs to be aware of these laws and everyone needs to become a specialist before dealing with this Canadian union and their political stance which has nothing to do with the work performed by the union members. All they are doing is punishing themselves and people wishing to do business with them. If they are smart, they will rescind their boycott immediately."

   While it is not illegal to do business with any Canadian company that adopts the Arab boycott of Israel, if that company, or any company in any country for that matter, asks or requires a US company to comply with the Arab boycott of Israel or their implementation of it, the US company will be required, by law, to report the request to the Office of Antiboycott Compliance; and if the US company complies with the boycott, they may face felony charges for violating the US Antiboycott laws.
© 2006 Divestment Watch