Goals for Combating Apartheid
A Statement of The American Lutheran Church, 1985
Adopted by the Church Council, The American Lutheran Church, 3-7 June 1985, as a supplement to "Goals for Combating Apartheid" (adopted by the Church Council June 1981). The 1981 recommendations were a "first-phase response" to the request of the 1980 ALC general convention (GC8O.4.58) for a "strategy. . . which will more effectively support the non-white population in southern Africa in its struggle for justice and representation, and which will lead to the reconciliation of all people in southern Africa." The 1985 supplementary recommendations were adopted by a vote of: Yes-34; No-3; Abstain-1.
In order to continue its support for the people of South Africa and Namibia who suffer oppression in those lands, to maintain its solidarity with the fellow believers who ask for our assistance, and to respond faithfully to our understanding of God's call to love mercy and seek justice, The American Lutheran Church endorses the following objectives and urgently asks the respective entities to implement them speedily:
1. We ask the South African government:
a. Repeal all apartheid laws and explicitly reject separate development as national policy.
b. Convene a constitutional convention for the purpose of providing full and equal citizenship rights for all South Africans within a united South African state, without distinction as to race or economic class.
c. Release political prisoners from jail or from banning orders and readmit political exiles.
d. Acquiesce to United Nations Security Council Resolution 435, providing for free elections and independence for Namibia without preconditions.
2. We ask the United States government:
a. Show serious commitment to ending of apartheid by publicly supporting the above-listed proposals to the South African government.
b. Insist that South Africa allow implementation, without preconditions, of UN Security Council Resolution 435 for the independence of Namibia.
c. Until such time as South Africa takes unequivocal steps on the dismantling of apartheid, support economic sanctions against South Africa, including:
1) prohibit any new investment by U.S. companies in South Africa;*
2) prohibit all U.S. businesses from operating in Namibia until such time as the Namibian people are independent;
3) prohibit loans from U.S. banks to South Africa's government or government-owned entities;
4) prohibit the sale of Krugerrand gold coins in the United States;
5) oppose loans to the South African government or its related agencies by multilateral lending institutions in which the United States participates:
6) support the principle of economic sanctions against South Africa through the United Nations.
* using the definition of the Study Commission on U.S. Policy Toward Southern Africa (1981), Time Running Out: limiting new investment to amounts necessary to maintain a company's market share and foregoing diversification into new lines of business.
3. We ask U.S. companies operating in South Africa:
a. Sign the amplified (1984) Sullivan Code provisions, which commit signatories to:
1) support the rescinding of all apartheid laws;
2) support freedom of mobility of Black workers to seek employment opportunities wherever they exist and provide adequate housing for families of employees within proximity of the workplace;
3) support unrestricted rights of Black businesses to locate in all urban areas;
4) influence other companies in South Africa to follow standards of equal rights for all employees.
b. Agree to a policy of non-expansion in South Africa until the apartheid system is dismantled.
c. Make the American Chamber of Commerce in South Africa a vehicle for public and forthright advocacy for elimination of apartheid.
d. Cooperate with the South Africa Council of Churches in its quest for a just society for all South Africans.
e. Recognize that, because apartheid is essentially a political and psychological system with devastating effects on all victims, meaningful opposition to apartheid requires more than improving the lot of Black workers employed by U.S. companies.
4. We ask the members of our congregations:
a. Pray that justice for all people of South Africa and Namibia may come without further delay, suffering, and bloodshed.
b. Become informed about South Africa and Namibia and the evils of apartheid, and continue to give support to churches in those countries in their struggle to bring about justice.
c. Call upon the president of the United States to replace this Administration's policy of "constructive engagement" with a more aggressive policy, and urge your members of Congress to pursue such a policy vigorously.
d. Withhold consumer support of South Africa's economy by refraining from purchase of South African gold or diamonds, from travel to South Africa in conventional tourism,* and from patronage of South African sports and entertainment groups in the United States.
* Study trips for the purpose of gaining better understanding of the situation in South Africa or Namibia are not discouraged.
e. Withdraw personal investments from companies doing business in South Africa or Namibia.
f. Conduct no business with U.S. banks which refuse to adopt a policy of no loans to the government of South Africa or its related entities.
g. Seek ways to relate to other coalitions and institutions which are addressing apartheid issues, in ways consistent with the goals adopted by The ALC.
5. We ask ALC congregations and related institutions and agencies:
a. Adopt the policy of the ALC Board of Trustees concerning investments in companies operating in South Africa.*
* In response to a request from the 1980 general convention of The American Lutheran Church, its Board of Trustees in May 1981 voted:
Resolved, That in the buying and selling of securities, where, in the judgment of the Board of Trustees, the economic considerations are equal a~ between two or more securities issues under study, the Board of Trustees will, where applicable, choose in favor of the company not doing business in South Africa (or choose against the company doing business in South Africa).
The 1984 ALC general convention voted (CC 84.22.104) "To commend the Board of Trustees for the progress they have made in divestment; and that January 1, 1988, become the target date for total divestment."
b. Conduct no business with U.S. banks which refuse to adopt a policy of no loans to the government of South Africa or its related entities.