Monday, June 1, 2009

Legislation to Close the School of the Americas

From the School of the Americas Watch Website:

HR 2567 Campaign

Representative Jim McGovern and 42 other members of the House of Representatives have reintroduced the Latin America Military Training Review Act. This legislation would suspend operations at the SOA/ WHINSEC, investigate torture manuals and human rights abuses associated with the school, and conduct an assessment of military training in Latin America.

Has your House Rep cosponsored HR 2567? Check out the list of cosponsors at the bottom of this page. If not, take action and be a part of the legislative campaign to close the SOA/ WHINSEC!

First step: Click here to email and fax an automatic letter to your House Representative and ask them to cosponsor HR 2567!

Here are some resources to help you with your work:

  • Check out the list of HR 1707 cosponsors from 2007-2008 to see who still needs to sign up
  • Use this sample letter as a guide to write to your Member of Congress
  • Tale a look at other sample resources in the sample materials section
  • Check out our sample phone script and make a quick phone call to Congress! You can contact the DC office of your Representative by calling the Capitol Hill Switchboard toll free at 1-800-473-6711, (or 202-224-3121). Ask to speak with the foreign affairs legislative assistant and here is a suggested message for you to convey:

    "As a constituent living in _________, I am calling Congressman/woman ________ to urge him/her to contact Rep. McGovern and ask to be a cosponsor of the Latin America Military Training Review Act, also known as HR 2567. This legislation would suspend operations at the School of the Americas, renamed WHINSEC, and investigate the history of human rights abuses and failed policies of the institution.

    New information indicates that WHINSEC has allowed known human rights abusers to instruct and receive training at the school. Argentina and Uruguay are two more countries that have made public announcements they will no longer send students to the school, citing the negative image and history of this institution. Despite demands by Congress to have oversight over the curriculum and promote human rights, the Pentagon is now denying all requests to provide information to human rights organizations and the public about students and graduates of the school.

    I urge you to contact Cindy Buhl in Representative McGovern's office and ask that your boss be added as a cosponsor of this legislation. I hope you will represent my views and support this bill."

    Other important Links:

  • Legislative 101 Flyer
  • Roll Call results for the May 2008 Defense Authorization Amendment
  • "Names" Amendment Information
  • Roll Call results for the June 2007 Foreign Ops Amendment

    Learning about your Representative

    An important part of a successful meeting with your Member of Congress on the SOA/ WHINSEC issue in the 111th Congress is doing your homework. Here are some key places to get the information you need to know the history and background of your legislator and their support (or oppositon) to the issue:

  • Check out the list of cosponsors for HR 2567. These Members of Congress support a suspension of operations at the SOA/ WHINSEC, an investigation of the school, and an assessment of U.S. foreign military training
  • List of the new members in the House of Representatives for the 111th Congress
  • Vote results for the June 2007 Foreign Ops Amendment to cut funding for the SOA/WHINSEC
  • House of Representatives homepage
  • Senate homepage
  •, a comprehensive source of information about Congress

    For more information on the detailed history of SOA Watch's meetings with your Representative and their voting history since their election to Congress, contact the DC office.

    Tips and Resources on Setting up a Meeting

    SOA Watch has pulled together tips on setting up a meeting with your Member of Congress that will help you with all of the ins and outs of a successful meeting with your legislators.

    Cosponsors of HR 2567 (as of 5/25/09 - date of last cosponsor) 42 + McGovern

  • Rep Baldwin, Tammy [WI-2]
  • Rep Bishop, Timothy H. [NY-1]
  • Rep Brady, Robert A. [PA-1]
  • Rep Braley, Bruce L. [IA-1]
  • Rep Capuano, Michael E. [MA-8]
  • Rep Carson, Andre [IN-7]
  • Rep Clay, Wm. Lacy [MO-1]
  • Rep Conyers, John, Jr. [MI-14]
  • Rep Cummings, Elijah E. [MD-7]
  • Rep DeLauro, Rosa L. [CT-3]
  • Rep Driehaus, Steve [OH]
  • Rep Ellsworth, Brad [IN]
  • Rep Farr, Sam [CA-17]
  • Rep Fattah, Chaka [PA-2]
  • Rep Frank, Barney [MA-4]
  • Rep Grijalva, Raul M. [AZ-7]
  • Rep Gutierrez, Luis V. [IL-4]
  • Rep Higgins, Brian [NY-27]
  • Rep Hinchey, Maurice D. [NY-22]
  • Rep Hodes, Paul [NH]
  • Rep Holt, Rush D. [NJ-12]
  • Rep Kind, Ron [WI-3]
  • Rep Kucinich, Dennis J. [OH-10]
  • Rep Lee, Barbara [CA-9]
  • Rep Lewis, John [GA-5]
  • Rep Lynch, Stephen F. [MA-9]
  • Rep Maloney, Carolyn B. [NY-14]
  • Rep Markey, Edward J. [MA-7]
  • Rep McCollum, Betty [MN-4]
  • Rep McDermott, Jim [WA-7]
  • Rep Moore, Gwen [WI-4]
  • Rep Oberstar, James L. [MN-8]
  • Rep Platts, Todd Russell [PA-19]
  • Rep Price, David E. [NC-4]
  • Rep Rothman, Steven R. [NJ-9]
  • Rep Schakowsky, Janice D. [IL-9]
  • Rep Serrano, Jose E. [NY-16]
  • Rep Tonko, Paul [NY]
  • Rep Waxman, Henry A. [CA-30]
  • Rep Welch, Peter [VT]
  • Rep Wu, David [OR-1]
  • Rep Yarmuth, John A. [KY-3]
  • No comments: