G4S: Resistance

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An overview of past campaigns and protests against G4S in the UK can be found at http://corporatewatch.org/?lid=4343

Campaigners in the UK and Sweden have taken various actions against G4S over the last few months. Meanwhile, various discussions and meetings are taking place to coordinate efforts aimed at forcing the multinational security giant to halt its “unlawful and criminal activities”, as well as to put pressure on public authorities to withdraw from and not award new contracts to the notorious company.

On the 6th June 2012, over 70 activists, some dressed in prison uniform, staged a protest outside the G4S annual general meeting at the London Stock Exchange.[1] Protesters handed the company's shareholders attending the meeting an ”alternative annual report”, based on Corporate Watch's research, which detailed the company's involvement in human rights abuses around the world.[2] Elsewhere, G4S advertising hoardings were subvertised by activists. One bus stop subvertisement read “G4S Proudly Securing Israeli Apartheid”.[3]

On 19th June, over 100 participants in the Stockholm No Borders Camp held a demonstration against the award of public contracts to G4S and blockaded a G4S depot.[4]

On 2nd July, campaigners from the Boycott Israel Network and No Borders UK occupied the roof of the G4S HQ in Crawley, West Sussex.[5] Two banners were hung from the edge of the building. One read “G4S – Profiting from: Israeli Apartheid, Prison Slavery, Deadly Deportations”. Another dozen protesters gathered on the ground, holding placards in support of the Palestinian hunger strikers, who have called for action against G4S.[6] A previous demonstration had been held at the G4S HQ in Crawley in May.[7]

The two rooftop occupiers appeared in court on 6th August to plead 'not guilty' to an 'aggravated trespass' charge under Section 68 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 on the basis that, among other things, the activity they are accused of obstructing/disrupting is “unlawful.”[8] A court hearing date was set for the 3rd and 4th December 2012 at Horsham and Haywards Heath magistrates courts respectively.

In August 2012, Good Energy decided to drop G4S as its meter reading contractor following complaints from customers and campaigners that the contract flies in the face of Good Energy's ethical policy.[9] Campaigners were also putting pressure on Ecotricity, another 'ethical' energy provider that uses G4S meter reading services, to follow suit and drop G4S.[10]


[1] www.demotix.com/news/1261195/protest-g4s-agm-accuses-company-violating-human-rights
[2] www.indymedia.org.uk/media/2012/06/496831.pdf
[3] www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2012/06/496844.html
[4] www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2012/06/497336.html
[5] www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2012/07/497595.html
[6] www.addameer.org/etemplate.php?id=460
[7] www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2012/05/496224.html
[8] www.corporatewatch.org/?lid=4382
[9] www.corporatewatch.org/?lid=4459
[10] www.corporatewatch.org/?lid=4481