Thursday, January 28, 2010

HELP Haiti Recover

One important way to help Haitians build a better tomorrow is to convince global creditors to cancel Haiti's crushing $1 billion international debt. Doing so will help make sure that every possible future dollar goes towards rebuilding a stronger Haiti, not to servicing old debts.

Thankfully, the United States has already forgiven Haiti's past debts and now only gives assistance in the form of grants. We need Haiti's other creditors - the International Monetary Fund, World Bank, Inter-American Development Bank, and countries like Taiwan and Venezuela - to follow our lead and do the same.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner has the power to help make that happen.

Please tell Secretary Geithner to work to secure the cancellation of Haiti's $1 billion debt and ensure emergency assistance is provided in the forms of grants, not debt-incurring loans.

Even before the earthquake hit, Haiti - the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere - faced tremendous challenges. But there was also hope. Recent years have brought a more stable government and tenuous gains in the fight against poverty.

Haiti needs an international effort to make sure that, as it begins the long road to recovery, it is not burdened with unpayable debts. We must also be vigilant that any new aid from the IMF and other sources doesn't come in the form of loans that would create new debt for Haiti.

It all starts by calling on Secretary Geithner to use his influence to persuade international lending institutions and countries to do the right thing and drop Haiti's debt.

To find out how, click here.

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