Ellie Park, Photography Editor

Despite student protests, Yale will not divest from military weapons manufacturers, the University announced on Wednesday. 

Yale wrote in a statement that its Advisory Committee on Investor Responsibility updated its policy to cover all assault weapons manufacturers that “engage in retail activities to the general public” but refused to divest from military weapons manufacturers. 

“The ACIR concluded that military weapons manufacturing for authorized sales did not meet the threshold of grave social injury, a prerequisite for divestment,” the University wrote in the statement.

The announcement comes amid monthslong calls from students for divestment from military weapons manufacturers, including a current student demonstration occupying Beinecke Plaza and a hunger strike that has urged the University to completely divest from weapons manufacturers

Hunger Strikers for Palestine has urged the University to divest from weapons manufacturers, stating their willingness to risk their “bodily health and wellbeing” in an effort to get the University to meet their demands. 

Yale Students Demand Action, a group working on gun violence prevention, brought a proposal to the ACIR to divest from all gun manufacturers last spring, prompting the review of the policy. 

Last November, University President Peter Salovey told the News that Yale would revisit its investments in weapons manufacturing amid student protests, renewed after Israel formally declared war against Hamas in Gaza.

In the Wednesday announcement, the University said that the ACIR had heard student presentations concerning the military weapons manufacturing divestment at its annual open meeting in November 2023. 

While the ACIR expanded the scope of the divestment policy, the key demand of protestors and hunger strikers — divestment from military weapons manufacturing — was not met. 

In the statement, the University stated that the military weapons manufacturing “supports socially necessary uses, such as law enforcement and national security.” 

The new policy on assault weapons manufacturers is an expansion of a 2018 policy that prohibited the Yale Corporation from investing in assault weapons retailers. Now the University will also divest from assault weapons manufacturers that “effectively retail” to the public. 

Protesters, who had been on Beinecke Plaza since Monday, moved to the rotunda in Schwarzman Center to avoid rain. The group of student hunger strikers declined to comment, saying that they would release a statement this evening. 

Josie Reich and Adam Walker contributed reporting.

This is a developing story that the News will continue to cover.

Update, April 17: This article has been update to attribute the protesters’ departure from the outdoor plaza to the rain. 

Kaitlyn Pohly is a sophomore in Silliman College. She serves as the Student Life Reporter for the University Desk and previously reported on Student Policy and Affairs. Originally from New York City, Kaitlyn is a History major. Outside of the classroom and the newsroom, Kaitlyn dances with YaleDancers.
Yurii Stasiuk is a Managing Editor of the Yale Daily News. He previously covered City Hall as a beat reporter. Originally from Kalush, Ukraine, he is a sophomore in Jonathan Edwards College majoring in History and Political Science.
Yolanda Wang (she/her) covers endowment, finances, and donations. She is a sophomore in Davenport College majoring in political science.