As discussed many times on this blog, the Tameside Council run Greater Manchester Pension Fund (headed by Tameside Council Leader, Roy Oldham) invests in many unethical businesses. We would like to draw your attention to one in particular - British American Tobacco. According to this file [PDF Link], the GMPF hold £9,188,274 of shares in British American Tobacco (BATS) as of 31/03/2008.
We have embedded an hour long BBC documentary above which attacks the tobacco industry and points out that one in particular, the same British American Tobacco, targets children in third world countries or 'emerging markets'. They do this by selling cigarettes individually, rather in packets, so that children can afford them.
We have been told that one councillor complained about the conflicting messages of the government. Whereas the government in this country is pushing people to stop smoking, the GMPF happily invests in the tobacco trade. The councillor made a valid point of asking how secure the shares were if many people in the UK were to stop smoking? Roy Oldham responded that the shares shouldn't be hit because there is "massive demand" in China.
So what a massive dose of karma Roy Oldham gets when he is diagnosed with cancer, when he will happily condone his pension funds investments to sell cancer sticks to children.