This release was written by Jubilee USA.
In the weeks since the earthquake that devastated Haiti, hundreds of thousands of people across the globe responded with individual generosity and with a call for justice – a call to drop Haiti’s debts and to ensure grant support instead of new loans. The message was so obvious and so widely supported that it could not be ignored: on February 6, we celebrated when the Group of Seven Finance Ministers responded by committing to drop Haiti’s debts to international institutions.
Haiti’s tragedy highlighted how the chains of debt lead to impoverishment and underdevelopment; how only by breaking those chains can a country even have a chance to recover and rebuild.
And yet we know that Haiti is not alone.
The most impoverished countries in the world still pay $100 million per day in debt service to the wealthiest countries. Because they can’t invest those resources in health, education, services, and infrastructure, they are more vulnerable to catastrophes like the one Haiti has suffered.
Late last year, Congressional leaders put aside partisan differences to stand together in support of expanded debt cancellation for the world’s poorest when they introduced the Jubilee Act (HR 4405). The Jubilee Act will expand life-giving debt cancellation to 22 additional impoverished countries left out of previous debt relief deals and calls for an end to harmful economic conditions and an audit of past odious and illegitimate debts.
Today is a national call-in day as part of the Change Not Chains Week of Action, where activists around the country are hosting events in their communities to build support for the Jubilee Act. Please take a minute and call your Representative today!
The global Jubilee movement is a powerful one. So far, we succeeded in achieving debt cancellation for 28 countries – allowing them to redirect resources toward health care, education and clean water. The Jubilee Act had broad bipartisan support in the last Congress, and with the victory of Haiti’s debt cancellation so recent, now is the time to build on that momentum to pass this year’s Jubilee Act (HR 4405).
Please take action today!
Call In Script
Making a call is quick and easy and will make a big difference! Call the Capitol Switchboard: 202-224-3121 and ask to be connected to your Representative. Don’t know who your rep is?Click here.
“Hi, my name is ___________ from _______________. I’m calling to ask Representative______ for his/her support for the Jubilee Act (H.R. 4405). The global economic crisis threatens to send 100 million people into extreme poverty this year, and debt relief for the world’s poorest countries is more critical than ever, so I hope we can count on Representative’s ______leadership on the Jubilee Act. In the current economic climate it is especially important that we take care of the world’s poorest- please cosponsor the Jubilee Act today!”