April 19, 2017
Action Alerts

ZOA Urges Marriott Stockholders: Vote Against Anti-Israel “Holy Land Principles” Resolution

ZOA Praises Marriott International, Inc. Board for Unanimously Recommending That Stockholders Vote AGAINST This Anti-Israel Misleading Resolution

ZOA Praises Marriott International, Inc. Board for Unanimously Recommending That Stockholders Vote AGAINST This Anti-Israel Misleading Resolution

The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) urges all stockholders of Marriott International, Inc. stock to vote AGAINST an anti-Israel so-called “Holy Land Principles” Stockholder Resolution (Item 5 on Marriott’s current Proxy Statement).  ZOA also praises the entire Marriott Board of Directors for recommending that shareholder vote AGAINST the “Holy Land Principles” stockholder resolution.  The Marriott Board of Directors issued a strong statement explaining that the resolution is unnecessary, because Marriott’s practices and governing principles and Israeli Law both protect employee equal opportunity rights, and that the resolution interferes with Marriott’s necessary ability to apply its Global Employment Principles, Policies and Practices uniformly across its over 6,000 hotels throughout the world. 

The resolution was proposed by an entity called “Holy Land Principles, Inc.,” which holds 73 shares of Marriott stock.  Holy Land Principles, Inc.’s website content indicates that “Holy Land Principles, Inc.” is apparently a front organization allied with the anti-Israel boycott, divestment and sanctions (“BDS”) movement.  The Holy Land Principles, Inc. website is replete with pro-BDS, anti-Israel articles, and lists over 500 American companies doing business in Israel that it is targeting.

The “Holy Land Principles” resolution harms Marriott’s business; is anti-Semitic because it singles out Marriott’s business practices at its two hotels in Israel (out of Marriott’s 6,080 hotels throughout the world) for unnecessary, expensive labor rights monitoring and special rules; and attempts to interfere with Marriott’s and Israel’s security requirements.   

The “Holy Land Principles” resolution harms Marriott’s business; is anti-Semitic because it singles out Marriott’s business practices at its two hotels in Israel (out of Marriott’s 6,080 hotels throughout the world) for unnecessary, expensive labor rights monitoring and special rules; and attempts to interfere with Marriott’s and Israel’s security requirements.   

The real purposes of the “Holy Land Principles” resolution are: (i) to make it more expensive and onerous for American companies to do any business in Israel, thereby harming American companies such as Marriott, Marriott’s hotel customers, the Jewish state, and Marriott’s Jewish, Christian and Muslim employees; and (ii) to try to delegitimize Israel as a country in need of special labor monitoring when in fact, Israel has an exemplary human rights and labor rights record and laws.  (See, e.g. National Labour Law Profile: The State of Israel,” by National Labour Court of Israel Judge Stephen J. Adler, assisted by Adv. Ariel Avgar, Int’l Labor Organization.)  Indeed, the Marriott Board of Directors’ statement explains that: “Israeli Equal Opportunity Law, which applies to our managed and franchised hotels in Israel, forbids discrimination in hiring, promoting, work conditions, training or termination of work.”

The real motives of the resolution’s sponsor are evidenced by the fact that the resolution targets hotels in Israel – the beacon of democracy and human rights and labor rights in the Middle East – while ignoring hotels in real human rights violators such as Qatar. “Trade unions and human rights activists have dubbed [Qatar’s labor framework] modern slavery.”  (“New Qatari Labor Law: Too Little, Too Late,” by James Dorsey, Huff Post; and “Qatar’s Backtrack On Labor Rights,” by James Dorsey, Huff Post, Jan 18, 2017.)   Qatar is also one of the top funders of Hamas terrorists.  (See ZOA: U.S. State Department Should Designate Qatar A State-Sponsor of Terrorism, and Suspend Qatar Airways FAA License – Unless Qatar Ceases Its Financial Support of Hamas,” Aug. 21, 2014.)

Please make sure to vote AGAINST the “Holy Land Principles” resolution if you are a Marriott shareholder, and spread the word.  Please contact ZOA at liz@zoa.org with any comments or questions.   Let us know what you’ve done regarding this action alert, and if you will be attending the Marriott annual shareholder meeting in Washington DC on May 5, 2017.   Please also alert ZOA if you know of other companies that will be voting on this or other similar shareholder resolutions.