Jubilee USA

For Immediate Release

Organization Profile: 

Phone: 202.783.3566
Email: coord(at)jubileeusa.org

Representative Duffy Pushes Puerto Rico Bankruptcy Legislation

WASHINGTON - Representative Sean Duffy (R-WI) is calling on Congress to intervene in Puerto Rico's debt crisis. In a speech on the House floor, Duffy said, "we can't turn a blind eye" to "our brothers and sisters on the island." Duffy introduced the "Puerto Rico Financial Stability and Debt Restructuring Choice Act" to extend bankruptcy protection and create an independent financial review board for the debt troubled island. Puerto Rico owes $72 billion in debt and faces a nearly 1 billion dollar payment come January.

"Congress needs to immediately address the humanitarian crisis affecting 3.5 million Americans" said Eric LeCompte, executive director of the religious development organization Jubilee USA. LeCompte consults Puerto Rico's religious leaders on solutions to the island's debt crisis. "Representative Duffy offers a new opportunity for Congress to act."

In his speech, Duffy noted that nearly 50% of the island's population lives in poverty and its unemployment rate is double the rate on the US mainland. In arguing for bankruptcy protection, Duffy noted that Americans in Puerto Rico should have the same rights as Americans on the mainland. Puerto Rico's Member of Congress, Pedro Pierluisi, introduced legislation earlier this year to allow the island access to Chapter 9 protection but without a review board. Under Duffy's legislation, Puerto Rico's government would need to approve the board's creation for it to take effect.

"Congress must take immediate action," said LeCompte‎. "With Congress slow to act, Treasury should intervene."

Read the Puerto Rico Financial Stability and Debt Restructuring Choice Act.

Watch Congressman Duffy's speech on the House floor.

Read a timeline of Puerto Rico's debt crisis.


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Jubilee USA Network is an alliance of more than 75 US organizations and 650 faith communities working with 50 Jubilee global partners. Jubilee USA builds an economy that serves, protects and promotes the participation of the most vulnerable. Jubilee USA wins critical global financial reforms and won more than $130 billion in debt relief to benefit the world's poorest people. www.jubileeusa.org

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