Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

Jubilee Act Halfway There!

April 22, 2008
Half-Hour for Haiti:  Jubilee Act Halfway There!
Update: Great News- the Jubilee Act, including Rep. Alcee Hastings’ Haiti amendment, passed the U.S. House of Representatives last Tuesday, by a comfortable 285-132 margin, including 69 Republicans (click here for votes). Many of the yea votes, especially on the Republican side, came from districts where Haiti supporters have been educating their representatives. So take some to celebrate- your calls, letters and meetings made a difference! The Jubilee Act is quickly going before the Senate- the Foreign Relations Committee will take it up the Senate version of the bill, S. 2166, Thursday, April 24. Eleven of the twenty one members of the Committee are already co-sponsors.Haitian death squad leader Emmanuel Constant’s bank fraud trial in New York is scheduled to start on May 6, and last for a month. The Center for Constitutional Rights is looking for volunteers to help monitor the trial.Lovinsky Pierre-Antoine will receive the Haiti Support Network of the North East’s annual Human Rights Award at the Nework’s Dinner-Dance on May 10 in Bayonne New Jersey.
Action: A list of Senate Foreign Relations Committee members is below, Jubilee Act co-sponsors have a “*” next to their name. If your Senator is a co-sponsor, thank her or him for supporting debt relief, and urge the Senator to support the inclusion of Rep. Hastings’ Haiti amendment during Thursday’s hearing. If your Senator is not a co-sponsor (voters in Alaska, Georgia, Florida, Louisiana, Maryland, Nebraska, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and Wyoming) urge him or her to support the Jubilee Act at Thursday’s hearing. For
1. Check the list below (organized alphabetically by State) for your Senator.

2. Call the Capitol switchboard at 202-224-3121.

3. Ask to be connected to your Senator’s office. The receptionist will answer. Introduce yourself as (your name), a constituent from (city, state).  Ask to speak with the staff person who handles Foreign Relations issues.

4. You will be connected with the staff person (or their voicemail). Say “I am calling to urge Senator ________ to support the Jubilee Act (S. 2166), which is scheduled for a hearing by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Thursday, April 24. The Jubilee Act has bipartisan support- the Committee Chairman, Sen. Biden and Ranking Majority Member, Sen. Lugar are both co-sponsors.  This bill would expedite debt cancellation for Haiti and expand debt cancellation for 24 additional impoverished countries, provided they meet criteria to ensure that the money is used for poverty reduction. This bill is vitally important right now in Haiti- starving Haitians are eating mud, and civil unrest from hunger threatens Haiti’s democratic government. At the same time, Haiti’s government sends almost $1 million per week to the World Bank and Inter-American Development Bank. Do you know how Senator  _________ plans to vote on the Jubilee Act?”

“The House of Representatives approved an amendment to the Jubilee Act to provide additional debt relief for Haiti, due to the food shortages and political turmoil.  I encourage Sen. ______ to support that Amendment.”

5. Be sure to thank the receptionist when you are finished.

6.  Email Danielle at Jubilee with the results of your call –  Please let us know if the staff person had questions or needs additional information.
7. Thank you for taking action – now forward this message on to 10 friends & urge them to make the call too!!

Alaska: Lisa Murkowski
Delaware:  Joseph R. Biden*
California: Barbara Boxer*
Connecticut: Christopher J. Dodd*
Florida: Bill Nelson
Georgia: Johnny Isakson*
Illinois: Barack Obama*
Indiana: Richard G. Lugar*
Louisiana: David Vitter
Maryland: Benjamin L. Cardin
Massachusetts:  John F. Kerry*
Minnesota: Norm Coleman*
Nebraska: Chuck Hagel
New Jersey: Robert Menendez*
Ohio: George V. Voinovich
Pennsylvania: Robert P. Casey Jr.*
South Carolina: Jim DeMint
Tennessee: Bob Corker
Virginia: Jim Webb
Wisconsin:  Russell D. Feingold*
Wyoming: John Barrasso
For more information about the Half-Hour for Haiti Program, the Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti, or human rights in Haiti, see To receive Half-Hour for Haiti Action Alerts once per week, send an email to

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Institute for Justice & Democracy In Haiti
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Boston, MA 02116

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