Northwest map


"We have basically left the era of national sovereignty and have entered the era of corporate sovereignty. That new scale makes it far more serious and dangerous for all human beings and the natural world." - Jerry Mander, Common Ground, May 1997 , p. 18


So, you don't own any individual stocks, but you would like to have an input on shareholder resolutions anyway. If you own a mutual fund, you can.

Some mutual funds, such as TIAA-CREF, hold annual meetings and as a "participant" in such a mutual fund, you can submit "participant resolutions" just like shareholder resolutions. Such resolutions often call for a mutual fund to divest from a particularly socially irresponsible stock that they have added to their portfolio.

In addition,

are the four largest stock-fund managers in the nation. Fidelity Investments, Putnam and Capital Management and Research have a little more than 25% of all stock-fund assets. Source:USA TODAY, 27 June 1997, p. 3B

You can e-mail Fidelity and Vanguard and ask them about their proxy voting guidelines.

Here is Vanguard's response:

Thank you for your recent e-mail to The Vanguard Group.

Vanguard's Proxy voting guidelines is proprietary information. The following information, however, may help.

Vanguard votes the proxies for all of the fund's holdings. The portfolio managers do not vote the proxies for the securities which are held in their portfolios.

Vanguard's policy with respect to proxy votes is to review each question, and vote according to what is in the best interest for Vanguard shareholders. Sometimes we will vote with management, and sometimes against.

I hope this information has been helpful to you. If you have any questions, please feel free to e-mail us again or call our Investor Information Department at 1-800-860-8394 and select option number one from the menu selection. An Associate will be pleased to assist you.

Donald P Yacko
Registered Representative
The Vanguard Group

Putnam does not have an e-mail address at this time and Capital Management and Research does not appear to have a WEB site.

A mutual fund votes on proxies it receives from its stock portfolio. Many mutual funds have proxy voting guidelines. Some merely vote for Corporate management positions.

For example, the following are the Proxy Voting Guidelines of the Domini Social Equity Fund, 6 St. James Ave, Boston, MA 02116 (1-800-762-6814) Semiannual Report - 31 January 1997:





Socially responsible investors eagerly await the proxy filing season as an opportunity to address companies on an ever-increasing range of issues. This year there are resolutions addressing standards of conduct for global operations, equal employment opportunity, insurance company investments in the tobacco industry, environmental performance, and executive compensation, just to name a few.

The text that follows has been taken from the Domini Social Equity Fund Proxy Voting Guidelines, a stand alone report that is available from the Fund by calling 1-800-762-6814. These Guidelines not only reflect how the Fund will vote its shares on various issues of concern to socially responsible investors, they are meant to be a tool for social investors to use in voting the shares of stock they may hold individually.

Shareholders are the owners of corporations, and with the rights of ownership come certain responsibilities. Voting proxies in a way that is consistent with our purpose as social investors in one of those responsibilities. While success on the road to greater corporate accountability is measured by management's attention to the issues rather than the vote count, it is often the voice of the shareholders that makes the difference.


Equal Credit Opportunity
Access to capital is essential to participating in our society. The Equal Credit Opportunity Act prohibits lenders from discriminating with regard to race, religion, national origin, sex, age, and the like. Shareholders have asked for:

The DSEF will support these resolutions.

Insurance Companies and Economically Targeted Investments
Economically Targeted Investments (ETIs) are loans made to low-to-moderate income communities or individuals to foster, among many things, small businesses and farms, affordable housing and community development banks and credit unions. Insurance companies presently invest less than 0.1 percent of their more than $1.9 trillion in assets into ETIs Shareholders have asked for reports outlining how insurers could implement an ETI program. The DSEF will support these resolutions.

"Redlining" is the systematic denial of services to an area based on its economic or ethnic profile. The term originated in banking, but the same practice infects businesses as different as insurance and supermarkets, and areas as broadly defined as "rural". Shareholders have asked management to appraise their lending practices and develop policies to avoid redlining. The DSEF will support these resolutions.

Violence on Television
Children's television programming recently set an all-time record of 32 violent acts per hour. By the time children finish elementary school, on average on average they have watched 8,000 murders and 100,000 acts of violence. Shareholders have asked media companies and program sponsors for reports on standards for television program production and mechanisms for monitoring violent programming. The DSEF will support these resolutions.


Boards of Directors- Nominating Women and Minorities
Shareholders have asked boards to make greater efforts to search for qualified female and minority candidates for nominations to the board of directors and to endorse a policy of broad inclusiveness. The DSEF will support these resolutions.

Board Slates without Women or Minorities
Typically, a board committee selects nominees for the board, and they run unopposed. If the board or the slate does not include women or minorities, the DSEF will oppose the board's nominees.

Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action Report
All corporations have the power to promote equality in the workplace and the marketplace. Shareholders have asked for reports that may include:

The DSEF will support these resolutions.

Equality Principles on Sexual Orientation
In 1995, a coalition of advocacy groups and businesses, primarily in financial services, developed the Equality Principles on Sexual Orientation. The Principles call on companies to:

Shareholders have asked for reports on the implementation of the Principles. The DSEF will support these resolutions.


CERES Principles
The Coalition for Environmentally Responsible Economies (CERES) was formed in 1989 in the wake of the Exxon Valdez disaster. It developed a set of ten principles, now called the CERES Principles, to guide corporate decisions that affect the environment. By subscribing to the Principles, a company commits itself to:

Shareholders have submitted resolutions asking corporations to study the Principles or to subscribe to them. The DSEF will support these resolutions.

Environmental Hazards to Community
The public has a right to know whether a company uses substances that pose an environmental health or safety risk to a community in which it operates. Shareholders have asked for the adoption of a policy making available information enabling neighbors to assess a facility's potential impact. The DSEF will support these resolutions.

Paper Production- Chlorine Bleaching
The insatiable demands for paper have led to clear cutting of forest for pulp and the use of chlorine bleaching to achieve whiteness in the end product. As both these practices have dire environmental consequences, shareholders have asked that paper manufactures phase out the production of paper using these processes. The DSEF will support these resolutions.

Paper Production - Telephone Directories
Some producers of telephone books use paper derived from virgin rainforests. Since alternative sources of paper exist, shareholders have asked publishers to phase out the use of paper from these sources. The DSEF will support these resolutions.


Global Companies - Standards of Conduct Companies acting outside the cultures in which they originated face complex issues arising from the diverse cultures and political and economic contexts in which they operate. These issues include: human rights; just wages and safe working conditions; child labor; forced labor; freedom of association; and the environment. Shareholders have asked companies to develop and adopt codes of conduct to guide company policies, programs, and operations outside their culture of origin. The DSEF will support these resolutions.

Global Companies - Standards for Vendors
The outcry surrounding the offshore sweatshops supplying U.S. retailers has many origins. Underlying those protests, however, is a common assumption: U.S. corporations have the power to alter the conditions under which their vendors operate. Shareholders have asked companies for reports describing their vendors' standards, focusing especially on the workers' right to organize and working conditions. They have also asked for descriptions of compliance mechanisms and external monitoring programs. The DSEF will support these resolutions.

International Lending and Economic Development
Shareholders have asked financial services companies to develop criteria for the evaluation, support, and use of intermediaries capable of promoting appropriate development in emerging economies. Others have asked for the disclosure of the criteria used in extending loans to developing countries. Still others have asked for information on IMF-World Bank-enforced structural adjustment programs. These programs are supposed to help developing countries repay loans, but considerable evidence indicates their efforts include:

The DSEF will support these resolutions.

Justice for Indigenous Peoples
Shareholders have asked companies to report on their mining operations on indigenous lands and to address the impact and implications of their activities on both the land and the people. The DSEF will support these resolutions.

Burma, China, and Indonesia
The behavior of the Burmese, Chinese, and Indonesian governments have led to an international outcry. Since these economies are almost entirely government-controlled, corporations operating there inevitably provide financial support to the military regime. Shareholder resolutions include:

The DSEF will support these resolutions.

Mexico - Maquiladoras
Maquiladoras are facilities operated by U.S. companies just south of the U.S.-Mexico border. there, Mexican workers - paid a fraction of what U.S. workers would require to subsist - assemble parts made in the U.S. and ship the finished goods north. Shareholders may ask management to:

The DSEF will support these resolutions.

In 1995, Nigeria's military government called international attention to its depredations when it executed nine dissidents after a drumhead trial. Shareholders have asked companies with operations in Nigeria to report on their businesses there and their relationships with the government. The DSEF will support these resolutions.

Northern Ireland - MacBride Principles
The International commission of Jurists has cited employment discrimination as one major cause of conflict in Northern Ireland. Shareholders have asked companies to make all lawful efforts to implement or increase activity on each of the nine MacBride Principles (equal employment opportunities). The DSEF will support these resolutions.


Sales of Non-Tobacco Products to Tobacco Industry
Shareholders have asked companies making significant sales of non-tobacco products to the tobacco industry to study the effects of ending these transactions or to stop immediately. The DSEF will support these resolutions.

Tobacco Smoke in the Environment
The hazards of tobacco smoke in the environment -- particularly indoors -- are well documented. Shareholders have requested that a company refrain from efforts to undermine legislation geared toward restricting smoking in public places. Shareholders have also asked restaurant and airline companies to adopt smoke-free policies. And, they have requested that new fast-food franchisees' facilities be smoke free. The DSEF will support these resolutions.

Tobacco Sales to Minors
In the United Kingdom, social investors with a tobacco screen eliminate supermarkets chains because they sell cigarettes. U.S. investors have focused on tobacco product manufacturers, not retailers. However, U.S. shareholders have submitted resolutions asking management of grocery chains, convenience stores, service stations, and pharmacies to implement programs to ensure that they do not sell tobacco products to minors or to stop selling them altogether. The DSEF will support these resolutions.

Tobacco Advertising
Tobacco is among the most heavily advertized products in the U.S. Shareholders have asked media companies that profit from cigarette advertising to:

The DSEF will support these resolutions.

Insurance and Health Care Companies Investing in Tobacco
Shareholders have asked insurance and health care company boards to report on the appropriateness of investments in the tobacco industry. They have also asked for reports on the impact smoking has on benefit payments for death, disease and property loss. The DSEF will support these resolutions.

Corporate Accountability | Shareholder Resolutions | SEC Regs |

Washington Corporations | *MUTUAL FUNDS* | Related Websites

WISE USE MOVEMENT, David E. Ortman, P.O. Box 17804
Seattle, WA 98107

1997 Wise Use Movement.

Northwest Corporate Accountability -TABLE OF CONTENTS-