Lydia Andrews

  • New NAFTA - Access to Medicines - We Need Your Help. . .

    Friend,

    Congress may soon vote on a new "NAFTA" deal that impacts inequality, global debt policies and whether or not poor people can access life-saving medicine. Before a new Congress comes to Washington, the current White House and Congress needs to hear from us - before they act. 

    In the past, trade agreements have failed to ensure that vulnerable people could access life-saving medicine. Poor communities have been priced out of the medicines they need in trade deals. In the new NAFTA agreement, trade disputes must be resolved in ways that protect the poor and that ensure those affected by trade ‎decisions are involved in making the decisions.

    We need you to endorse our interfaith statement on trade, debt and access to medicines to let Congress know that any trade deal must include access to life-saving medicines for the vulnerable. We will be sending your endorsements to the White House and Congress before they vote on a new NAFTA deal.

    Over the last 7 years, Jubilee USA raised concerns on how trade agreements are used to favor predatory or "vulture" funds to collect on old debt. In Peru, a hedge fund is trying to use a trade agreement process to collect on old military dictatorship debt. 

    Because of our efforts together, the new "NAFTA" deal could severely limit these predatory actors from using trade processes to take advantage of vulnerable populations. Too many trade agreements undermine protections for poor communities, local labor standards and environmental laws.

    At Jubilee USA's core, we work on economic policies to ensure that resources get to the most vulnerable communities. It's why for years we've worked with and organized our national faith partners to promote trade agreements that ensure that vulnerable communities can access life-saving medicine. We still have a lot of work to win strong protections for vulnerable communities in a new NAFTA deal. It's why we need you to endorse the interfaith statement and help us spread the word to your networks.

    Already the leaders of the Lutheran, Methodist, Catholic, Presbyterian, Episcopal and United Church of Christ Churches signed our Jubilee trade statement. Please have your faith community endorse the statement too.

    Click here to add your name to out interfaith statement on trade, debt and access to medicines. By endorsing the letter you are telling Congress that you want access to medicines for vulnerable communities in any new "NAFTA" deal.

    Our strategic campaigns on trade, transparency, debt relief and lifting Puerto Rico continue to achieve results with your help.

    As your faith community offers a prayer for Jubilee November 16th-18th, we are also mindful of last year's hurricanes that ravaged Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, Barbuda and Dominica. We expect additional votes on Puerto Rico relief as the island enters a new phase of debt negotiations and debt traps. Before the end of the year, we will also need to do more to make sure that Congress and the White House act for Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.

    Gratefully,

    Eric LeCompte
    Executive Director
    Twitter: @Eric_LeCompte
    www.jubileeusa.org/donate

    FB Twitter Donate Blog Flickr
    Jubilee USA Network
    110 Maryland Ave. NE, Ste. 210 - Washington, DC 20002
    (202) 783-3566 - coord@jubileeusa.org

     

     

     


  • Pray for Healing and Recovery for Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands

    Nearly one year ago, Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands. The storm left almost all of the islands without food, electricity, or clean water and led to the deaths of thousands of U.S. citizens. Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands deserve the same attention and treatment as other areas on the mainland, and the same levels of healthcare and child tax benefits as American citizens. Join with us on the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Maria the weekend of September 20-23 by holding a prayer vigil with your local community to mourn and honor those who lost their lives and call for increased aid and more equitable policies for Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.

    Act: On September 20-23, religious groups and individuals across the country will be staging vigils to mourn the victims of Hurricane Maria and call for more aid and fairer policies for the islands. Hurricane Maria survivors, along with advocates and allies, will be also be hosting vigils.  

    Who: All are welcome to host or attend a vigil, include the below prayer during the weekend service and/or light candles on behalf of those on the islands.

    When: Anytime from September 20-23rd

    Where: Places of worship, community centers, and homes across the country

    Share: We are encouraging you to share photos of your event by tweeting at us @JubileeUSA and using the #1YearAfterMaria hashtag, tag us on our Jubilee USA Facebook and Jubilee USA Network Instagram page.  

     

    Interfaith Prayer for Healing and Recovery

    As we remember the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Maria and the devastation that it brought upon our neighbors in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, we both grieve the devastation and loss of life that occurred, and recognize the ways in which you God are present even in these difficult times and in the midst of this crisis.

    As we consider the many needs of the people of these islands, we pray for mercy, comfort, and relief for our brothers and sisters at this time.

    As people of faith, we will continue to outstretch our arms in support and ask for the help that is beyond our means.

    We pray for the hearts and minds of those in power, that they too might see the needs of your people, and view Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands with eyes of compassion.  

    We are standing with them.

    Thank you, oh God of many names, for the hope that leads us onward.

    Amen.

     

    Prayer Vigils:

    Lydia Andrews - Jubilee USA Network, Washington DC

    Karen Lull - Dubuque, IA

    Bishop Pat Bumgardner - New York, NY

    Martín Anderson - First Congregational Church of Chicago-UCC, Chicago, IL

    Octavia Pleas - Overland Park, KS

    Mary Mendum - Wilton, CT

    Barbara Lenarcic - Sisters of the Humility of Mary, Villa Maria, PA

    Rabbi Matt Cutler - Congregation Gates of Heaven, Schenectady, NY

    Rev. Will McGarvey - Community Presbyterian of Pittsburg, Pittsburg, PA

    Steve Herder - Ascension Lutheran, Thousand Oaks, CA

    Alexandra Singer

    Barbara DiTommaso - Commission on Peace and Justice, Rensselaer, NY

    Sr. Maria Christi Drysdale - Philadelphia, PA

     

     

     

     

     

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  • Bretton Woods Cites Eric LeCompte Discussing the Current Financial Crisis

    Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of Jubilee USA was recently cited in Bretton Woods speaking on the current financial crisis. This discussion was held at the International Monetary Fund/ World Bank Spring Meeting Civil Society Forum event. Read the excerpt below and follow the link to full article.

    Financial crisis 10 years on. Has the response to 2008 laid the foundations for the next?

    By: Miriam Brett

    Since January in the USA, there has been an attempt to repeal financial regulation measures put in place following the financial crisis.

    The proposed repeal of section 1504 of the Dodd-Frank Act – also known as Cardin-Lugar anti corruption law – poses a significant threat. This is the portion of the legislation that called for greater transparency, recording payment processes, which acted as an anti-bribery law and covered areas such as illicit financial laws, tax evasion, and corruption. 1504 was under sustained attack and repealed in the House of Representatives.

    This was significant as it had been used as a model for regulation and legislative measures post crisis, and a consensus was brought about on this.

    A model law could offer a different approach and a legislative remedy to deal with 51 per cent of where the world’s debt stock is marketed. The US and UK have between an 85 and 90 per cent share of the debt market, and Germany, Singapore and Japan also charting high.

    There is a possibility to change New York law as a model law, to say that if ¾ of investors agrees to a structuring, we have to move things forward for debt to be arbitrated, which could offer a viable and clear path forward.

    Read more here.


  • All Africa Talks with Eric LeCompte about Global Debt

    Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of Jubilee USA was recently featured in All Africa speaking on global debt. Read excerpt below and follow link to full article.

    Ghana: IMF Warns Ghana Over Financial Crises

    By: Felix Dela Klutse

    "IMF sees continued economic growth, but it's warning that continued growth is short lived," Executive Director of Jubilee USA, Eric LeCompte, has stated during the 2018 Spring Meetings of the IMF and the World Bank Group in Washington DC, USA.

    He continued: "Rising debt levels are a growing risk around the world. Now is the time for countries to get their houses in order to prevent and be prepared for future financial crises."

    Mr LeCompte said countries need to rebuild fiscal buffers, enact structural reforms, and steer monetary policy cautiously in an environment that is already complex and challenging in order to prevent any future financial crises.

    Read more here.

     


  • National Catholic Reporter Talks with Eric LeCompte on Puerto Rico Fiscal Plan

    Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of Jubilee USA was recently featured in the National Catholic Reporter speaking on Puerto Rico's fiscal future. Read excerpt below and follow link to full article.

    Puerto Rico needs bold, visionary effort, especially in energy

    By: Michael Sean Waters

    Beyond the challenges inflicted by the hurricane, the fiscal crisis has only worsened. "Early last year, Puerto Rico's oversight board and governor authorized a fiscal plan with high debt payment cuts and austerity measures," Eric LeCompte, executive director of JubileeUSA told NCR. JubileeUSA has been very active monitoring the debt crisis negotiations. "When the hurricanes hit, the oversight board eliminated the previous plan to make room for a new plan that took into account the storm devastation. As we were working on a new fiscal plan early this year, there were some serious improvements, including a complete stop on debt payments." For a variety of reasons, Puerto Rico’s public debt soared in the past 10 years as economic activity on the island never rebounded from the 2008 recession and the phasing out of special tax breaks for manufacturing on the island in 2006. 

    "Unfortunately, the governor's most recent plan looks largely similar to the plan before the hurricanes and doesn't stop debt payments or take into account the magnitude of hurricane damage," says LeCompte. "In the next few weeks, the oversight board will likely certify a new fiscal plan and we need to be sure that a new plan stops all debt payments for at least five years, supports a high total principle cut of the debt, lessens austerity and has specific measures to only pay debt in the future if we see sustained economic growth and child poverty reduction." 

    LeCompte is also worried that Congress may not authorize the reconstruction money the island needs. "Puerto Rico can't succeed if Congress does not authorize the remaining recovery funds the island needs," he told me. "We continue to work with congressional leadership to get the remaining installments of relief aid over the coming months." 

    Read more here.


  • ValueWalk Features Eric LeCompte Discussing Puerto Rico's Debt

    Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of Jubilee USA was recently featured in ValueWalk speaking on Puerto Rico's debt. Read excerpt below and follow link to full article.

    Puerto Rican Debt Negotiations At Critical Crossroads

    By: Mark Melin

    Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of Jubilee USA, a debt relief advocacy group, told ValueWalk negotiations have become “a Kabuki dance over what should and should not be in the plan.”

    The fiscal plan will set the framework for a final solution, which could occur through two routes.

    One solution can occur through direct negotiations between all interested parties, including creditors. The other is for Judge Laura Taylor Swain, who was appointed to supervise the bankruptcy process, to issue a ruling on the final settlement. The negotiation process includes input from creditors while Judge Swain, who has shown a propensity to side with those advocating debt relief, is not required to negotiate with creditors.

    Pushing for a solution comes as US lawmakers authorized Promesa in June 2016 to create a board and iron out a turnaround plan which, to date, has not materialized.

    LeCompte, who negotiated with Congress to set up the current process and advocates against austerity measures until hurricane relief is complete, would like to see a long-term solution. He advocates creating a new type of bond that increases its payout to investors as the economy picks up steam but automatically suspends debt payments if or when another natural disaster occurs.

    If a permanent solution is created that gives investors an extra payout during times of strong economic growth it would set a precedent. Currently being discussed are solutions where a Puerto Rican bond might pay 6% or 7% during “normalized” conditions. If the economy improves beyond clear benchmarks investors might receive 10%, LeCompte said. But if a natural disaster were to occur, the bond payments would be halted until the humanitarian crisis subsides.

    At issue in negotiations are government workers taking a 10% cut in their pensions while creditors might take an 80% cut in their payments until the current hurricane relief program is complete.

    “If we don’t get it right, if Puerto Rico doesn’t get back to economic growth, no one wins,” LeCompte said. “Consumers need to consume in order for an economy to grow and there can only be promise if good economic policies are in place.”

    Read more here.



     

     


  • Common Dreams Talks with Eric LeCompte about Caribbean Debt Relief

    Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of Jubilee USA was recently featured in Common Dreams speaking on Caribbean Debt Relief. Read excerpt below and follow link to full article.

    In Midst of 'Immense Suffering' Caused by Climate Crisis, Caribbean Religious Leaders Call for Debt Relief

    By: Jake Johnson

    "Across the Caribbean, we still see immense suffering from the hurricanes that landed last year," Jubilee USA executive director Eric LeCompte said in a statement endorsing the Caribbean leaders' call. "Islands that are struggling to recover after natural disasters and meet basic needs of their people should not be making debt payments."

    Read more here.


  • In Depth News Talks to Eric LeCompte about Caribbean Disater Relief

    Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of Jubilee USA was recently featured in In Depth News speaking on Caribbean disaster relief. Read excerpt below and follow link to full article.

    Caribbean Faith Leaders Call for Debt Relief and More

    By: J C Suresh

    "Across the Caribbean, we still see immense suffering from the hurricanes that landed last year," said Jubilee USA Executive Director Eric LeCompte who endorsed the statement. "Islands that are struggling to recover after natural disasters and meet basic needs of their people should not be making debt payments."

    Read more here.

     


  • WSJ Talks with Eric LeCompte about Puerto Rico Debt and Long-Term Growth

    Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of Jubilee USA was recently featured in The Wall Street Journal speaking on Puerto Rico debt. Read excerpt below and follow link to full article.

    Why Puerto Rico is Proving to Be 2018’s Top Bond Investment

    By: Matt Wirz

    “The construction boom after the hurricane is fueling an increase in bond prices, but that’s going to be short lived,” said Eric LeCompte, executive director of Jubilee USA Network, one of the activist groups seeking debt forgiveness for Puerto Rico. “We should be focused on long-term economic growth for Puerto Rico and that includes debt relief.”

    Read more here.

     


  • The Bond Buyer Talks with Eric LeCompte about Puerto Rico Loan Delay

    Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of Jubilee USA was recently featured in The Bond Buyer speaking on the loan delay for Puerto Rico disaster relief. Read excerpt below and follow link to full article.

    U.S. Treasury Secretary says Puerto Rico Loan Delay is Island Government’s Fault

    By: Robert Slavin

    Eric LeCompte, executive director of Jubilee USA -- a non-profit devoted to the forgiveness of debt on humanitarian grounds -- said the priority should be to get money for rebuilding distributed as fast as possible.

    "Almost six months after Hurricane Maria, we are still dealing with real human and economic suffering," he said. "It seems everyone is trying to work together to get the first installment of financing sent and it needs to be urgently sent."

    LeCompte continued: “More long-term, everyone who cares about Puerto Rico also cares about greater public budget transparency on the island. Fortunately there are paths moving forward. We do have some processes that are improving transparency like the ongoing bankruptcy process and Treasury's Office of Technical Assistance on the ground."

    Read more here.


  • The Intercept talks with Eric LeCompte about the Puerto Rico Debt Crisis

    Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of Jubilee USA recently talked with The Intercept speaking on the Puerto Rico debt crisis. Read excerpt below and follow link to full article.

    Citigroup Drove Puerto Rico Into Debt. Now It Will Profit From Privatization on the Island.

    By: Kate Aronoff

    “Our concern with how debt restructurings often happen is that consultants too often turn to traditional prescriptions that haven’t necessarily worked. We believe fundamentally that austerity hurts economies when they’re trying to get back to economic growth.”

    Read more here.


  • El Nuevo Dia Talks With Eric LeCompte About Puerto Rico

    Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of Jubilee USA was recently featured in El Nuevo Dia speaking on disaster relief for Puerto Rico. Read excerpt below and follow link to full article.

    Buscan Incluir una Resolución para Mitigar Desastres en el Presupuesto

    By: José A. Delgado

    “El Senado debe llevar a votación la asistencia para desastres y reconstrucción para Puerto Rico y las Islas Vírgenes estadounidenses… Es increíble que el Senado haya tardado tanto en actuar”, indicó el director ejecutivo de la coalición religiosa Jubilee USA, Eric LeCompte.

    Read more here.

     


  • National Catholic Reporter Cites Eric LeCompte on Repeal of Section 1504

    Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of Jubilee USA was recently cited in National Catholic Reporter speaking on the repeal of Section 1504 of the Dodd-Frank law. Read excerpt below and follow link to full article.

    Republican attacks on the FBI are despicable

    By: Michael Sean Winters

    “Some bad things garner less press coverage but set back efforts to fight poverty around the world. Also on Dec. 13, the House Financial Services Committee voted to repeal Section 1504 of the Dodd-Frank law, the section that required U.S. oil and mining corporations to report how much they give to foreign governments. I wrote about this issue earlier this year. ‘It's a sad day when basic anti-poverty and transparency initiatives are repealed,’ said Jubilee USA executive director Eric LeCompte after the vote.”


    Read more here.


  • National Catholic Reporter Covers Jubilee USA’s Prayer Vigil for Puerto Rico

    Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of Jubilee USA was recently cited in National Catholic Reporter speaking on the Prayer Vigil for Puerto Rico and the need for rebuilding and debt relief of the people of the islands. Read excerpt below and follow link to full article.

    Capitol Hill prayer vigil draws attention to Puerto Rico's disaster relief needs

    By: Julie Bourbon

    “Eric LeCompte, executive director of Jubilee, articulated several priorities for Puerto Rico, including debt relief and a debt moratorium, a better building provision, and allowing residents of the island full access to Medicare and Medicaid benefits as well as the child tax credit.

    Under the Stafford Act, LeCompte said, aid must be sufficient to rebuild infrastructure as it was. Jubilee and others are calling for the better building provision so that the island’s already failing infrastructure will be improved.

    ‘We know in Puerto Rico, if we rebuild what was, when the hurricane comes next year, what is rebuilt will not stand,’ LeCompte said. ‘The reality is the situation was tragic before the storm. What was a tragedy before has become a full blown humanitarian crisis.’”


    Read more here.


  • Archbishop, Faiths Pray for Puerto Rico at Congress

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    December 19, 2017

    Archbishop and Religious Groups Hold Puerto Rico Prayer Vigil at US Capitol

    Washington DC - As Congress considers recovery and relief packages for hurricane-hit Puerto Rico, the island's Archbishop and national religious on Wednesday will hold a prayer vigil in a Congressional office building.

    "Puerto Rico needs a Congress that is sensitive to the pain of the people of Puerto Rico," noted Roberto González, Archbishop of the Catholic Archdiocese of San Juan de Puerto Rico. Gonzalez will be the primary presider at the service. "It needs a Congress that respects Puerto Rico's right to reconstruct with dignity."

    San Juan's Archbishop will be joined at the prayer vigil by a number of major religious groups including: the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, the United Church of Christ, the National Association of Evangelicals, the Muslim Public Affairs Council, Catholic Charities USA, the Franciscan Action Network, Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of New York and Jubilee USA Network.

    The various groups will be praying and calling for adequate rebuilding aid, debt relief and financing for healthcare and child benefits on par with what US States receive.

    "Puerto Rico desperately needs adequate rebuilding aid so its power grid and infrastucture is strong enough to withstand the next storm," noted Eric LeCompte of the religious development group that is organizing the event, Jubilee USA Network. "Puerto Rico needs debt relief and equal access to Medicare, Medicaid and child tax benefit funding."

    The event will be held at noon on December 20th from noon-1 pm in room 121 of Congress' Cannon House Office Building

    Available for Interview: Eric LeCompte, Executive Director
    Contact: Lydia C. Andrews, Deputy Director
    lydia@jubileeusa.org / (o) (202) 783-3566 x109 (m) (847) 772-2305


  • published 1504 Repeal Statement in Press 2017-12-13 15:58:21 -0500

    1504 Repeal Statement

    Anti-Poverty and Transparency Law Repealed by House Committee
    Washington DC - On Wednesday the US House of Representatives Financial Services Committee voted 33-27 to repeal section 1504 of the "Dodd-Frank" Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010. Section 1504 requires oil and mining companies to disclose what payments companies make to governments where they operate to the Securities and Exchange Commission.

    Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of the religious development organization, Jubilee USA, releases the following statement:

    "I supported Section 1504 because it was a common sense, bipartisan model to combat revenue thefts from the poor and a new beginning to address tax evasion and corruption.

    "Section 1504 requires annual reporting by oil, gas and mining companies of financial activity and payments to governments where these companies operate. Requiring disclosure of these payments helps fight corruption by extending the transparency we have in our own federal budget to other countries that need to be more forthcoming about public finances.

    "Because Congress acted on this transparency initiative, the world followed. Europe and Canada passed and expanded Congress’ action and the idea of increasing this type of financial reporting has now become a critical part of global development agreements. ‎

    "It's a sad day when basic anti-poverty and transparency initiatives are ‎repealed."

    Read Eric LeCompte's February oped in the Hill opposing the repeal of Section 1504. 

     

    Available for interview: Eric LeCompte, Executive Director
    Contact: Lydia C. Andrews, Deputy Director
    (o) 202-783-3566 x109 (m) 847-772-2305 / lydia@jubileeusa.org


  • Archbishop and Evangelical Leader Tell Congress to Protect Puerto Rico in Tax Plans

    As the Senate and House tax plans head to conference committee to reconcile tax plan differences, major religious leaders from Puerto Rico are asking Congress to protect the island from new proposed ‎taxes. Metropolitan Archbishop Roberto O. González Nieves, OFM of the Catholic Archdiocese San Juan de Puerto Rico and Puerto Rico Bible Society Secretary, Reverend Heriberto Martínez-Rivera wrote to Congress with their concerns.

    "If Congress treats American citizens living in Puerto Rico differently than American citizens living in the 50 States by treating our island as a foreign jurisdiction, we believe recovery for our island home will be nearly impossible," wrote González and Martínez-Rivera in their letter to Congress.  "We respectfully request that all Members of Congress ensure that a final tax reform plan does not impose new excise taxes on Puerto Rico."

    Working with Jubilee USA and US religious groups, the Archbishop and Evangelical leader have engaged Congress for nearly two years to move policies that promote economic growth and reduce the island's crippling debt load and high child poverty rate. In the recent letter they wrote to Congress, they ‎noted that tens of thousands of American jobs could be lost in Puerto Rico if the Senate and House conference committee did not strip the excise tax from final legislation.

    "If Congress fails to remove this excise tax in their final tax package, it is just like hitting Puerto Rico with another hurricane," said Jubilee USA Director Eric LeCompte who advises Puerto Rico's religious leaders and serves on United Nation expert groups. "Before the hurricanes, we were dealing with a severe financial crisis and almost half of all Puerto Rican kids were living in poverty. We are now dealing with a full blown humanitarian crisis that Congress can make better or even worse."‎

    Read Archbishop González and Reverend Martínez-Rivera's letter to Congress. 


  • published Jubilee USA Releases Tax Reform Statement in Press 2017-12-01 10:35:58 -0500

    Jubilee USA Releases Tax Reform Statement

    The Senate could vote later on Friday on a tax reform package. If a package passes the Senate, the House and Senate will likely use the conference committee process to reconcile differences between the final House and Senate tax packages.

    Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of the religious development organization, Jubilee USA, releases the following statement:

    “Any final tax reform package should support and protect vulnerable communities. I’m concerned that portions of the current tax plans will harm poor populations.

    "A final tax package should not shifts greater tax burdens to the poor or constrict our budget from providing adequate foreign development assistance or disaster relief.

    "We could see more developing countries borrowing more money and becoming more indebted as a result of less foreign assistance because of current tax plans.

    “Current tax reform legislation moves the US to a so-called territorial tax system that encourages the use of tax havens and permits corporations to avoid paying US taxes and taxes in developing countries. Such a plan has a human cost and negatively impacts poor people at home and abroad.‎

    “Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands are still struggling to recover from the aftermath of this hurricane season and they should not be subject to additional excise taxes that US states are not subject to. While Congress considers tax policies to promote jobs for Americans in the 50 States, those policies must also ensure that US citizens living in Puerto Rico and the Territories are treated the same. Puerto Rico and the US Territories will lose tens of thousands of jobs if Congress passes a final tax package with new excise taxes for the Territories.”


  • Congress Tax Reform Package Could Harm Poor, Warns Religious Development Group

     As the Senate pushes tax reform, the head of a religious development group expressed concern over parts of the House and Senate proposals that could harm low income people in the United States and people in the developing world.

    “Any final tax reform package should support and protect vulnerable communities. I’m concerned that portions of the current tax plans will harm poor populations,” said Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of Jubilee USA. “A final tax package should not shift greater tax burdens to the poor or constrict our budget from providing adequate foreign development assistance or disaster relief.”

    The House and Senate will likely use the conference committee process to reconcile differences between the final House and Senate tax reform packages.

    “Current tax reform legislation moves the US to a so-called territorial tax system that encourages the use of tax havens and permits corporations to avoid US taxes and taxes in developing countries,” noted LeCompte. “Such a plan has a human cost and negatively impacts poor people at home and abroad.”

    Jubilee USA has worked with Congress for nearly two years on US financial policies regarding Puerto Rico. Portions of a final tax package could impact Puerto Rico and other US Territories according to LeCompte.

    “As Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands are still struggling to recover from the aftermath of this hurricane season, they should not be subject to additional excise taxes that US states are not subject to,” stated LeCompte. “While Congress considers tax policies to promote jobs for Americans in the 50 States, those policies must also ensure that US citizens living in Puerto Rico and the Territories are treated the same. Puerto Rico and the US Territories will lose tens of thousands of jobs if Congress passes a final tax package with new excise taxes for the Territories.”


  • Eric LeCompte Quoted by IRIN News on Debt Relief in the Caribbean

    Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of Jubilee USA Network, was recently cited in IRIN News on debt relief in the Caribbean. Read excerpt below and follow link to full article. 

    Recovery pledges for hurricane-ravaged Caribbean are a drop in the ocean

    By: Samuel Oakford

    Eric LeCompte, director of Jubilee USA, said his umbrella group of religious organisations was exploring ways of delaying payments and obligations over the coming months.

    “That’s an issue where we’ve seen some progress, but we don’t have firm commitments from the IMF or Paris club over any kind of debt moratorium.”

    Read more here