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June 28, 2016
United States Senate
Washington, DC 20510
Since late last year, I have been urging members of Congress to stand in solidarity with the people of Puerto Rico, and to act expeditiously to ensure that they, particularly those most in need, are assisted in the midst of the current financial crisis. In my May letter, I outlined principles to help ensure that decision-makers safeguard human dignity and ensure the common good. Now that the House of Representatives has acted to pass H.R. 5278, the "Puerto Rico Oversight, Management and Economic Stability Act" (PROMESA), I call upon the Senate to answer this call and pass the provisions of S.2328 pertaining to Puerto Rico.
Archbishop Roberto González Nieves of San Juan, Puerto Rico has been outspoken in asking for meaningful assistance for the people of the island. While PROMESA is far from perfect, the Archbishop identified that, at the least, it "can provide what the US bankruptcy code provides, a framework that protects the rights and dignity of Puerto Rico's people and bond holders."
I write to you today to echo my brother bishop's call to support the provisions of PROMESA that are now being considered as part of S.2328, in order to provide breathing room and real hope for the people of Puerto Rico. While imperfect, the legislation is certainly a step in the right direction.
Protecting vulnerable people, especially children, who through no fault of their own are impacted by the financial crisis, should be a priority of all of us. I commend your swift work to find responsible and vital solutions to support the people of Puerto Rico at this critical moment.
Most Reverend Thomas G. Wenski
Archbishop of Miami
Chairman, Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development
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