In his plenary report to the 2012 General Assembly, UUA Financial Advisor Dan Brody focused on three areas in which UUA policies and practices have been modified to align with UU values.
He described the UUA’s decision in 2010 to move the management of its retirement funds from Fidelity to TIAA-CREF after Fidelity resisted the UUA’s call for divestment from companies implicated in the genocide in Darfur. Just last month, Brody said, the UUA Investments Committee voted to terminate one Common Endowment Fund manager because the fund held investments in companies doing business with the government of Sudan.
Brody commended the Common Endowment Fund to delegates. “If your congregation is not a participant in the UUCEF,” he said, “you’re probably getting a lower return while putting a greater percentage of your assets in morally risky investments. It’s time for you to join our common fund.”
Brody also praised the UUA’s health insurance plan, launched in 2006, which covers most UUA employees and many congregational employees. “After five and a half successful years, the UUA Health Plan now serves more than 1,500 employees, retirees, and dependents in more than 300 congregations.”
Finally, Brody explained that policies established by the Board of Trustees are explicitly tied to values. “Among the policies we’ve created are ones that require that all UUA employees be paid a ‘living wage,’ that prevent discrimination in the awarding of pensions and other benefits, and that protect whistleblowers from retaliation,” Brody said.
Brody’s ten-page written Annual Report includes detailed charts about the UUA’s finances.
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Christopher L. Walton is editor of UU World. He holds degrees from Harvard Divinity School and the University of Utah and is a member of the Church of the Larger Fellowship.