Action Alert!
SOA Watch has received confirmation that this week Congress will vote on an amendment to close the School of the Americas, now called the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation (SOA/ WHINSEC). Rep. Jim McGovern of Massachusetts will introduce an amendment to the Foreign Operations appropriations bill to cut funding for the school!

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(Be sure to click the "Send a Fax" box to have the fax sent).

Call-in Days to Close the SOA/WHINSEC
Monday, June 18 - Wednesday, June 20:
Call Congress at 202-224-3121.
Ask to speak with the foreign affairs legislative assistant. Here is a suggested message for you to convey:
"I am calling Representative ________ to urge her/him to vote YES on the McGovern amendment to the Foreign Operations Appropriations bill. This amendment is a cut in funding for the School of the Americas/ WHINSEC. New information indicates that WHINSEC has allowed known human rights abusers to instruct and receive training at the school. The governments of Costa Rica, Argentina and Uruguay have made public announcements they will no longer send students to the school, citing the negative image and history of this institution. Voting YES on this amendment sends a positive human rights message to Latin America and will help to improve the U.S. image abroad. As an elected official in Washington D.C., I hope you will represent me and vote YES on any amendment in the House that would cut funding for the school."
We expect a close vote in the House this week, and we need as many people as possible flooding the offices of Members of Congress with calls in support of a YES vote on the amendment! We need you to call, email and fax Congress every day until the vote happens. Tell your family and friends to do the same!

It's been a year since our last vote in Congress, and the work of thousands of people like you across the Americas who care about justice has gotten us to where we are today. Let's seize this opportunity to make history in the defense for human rights!

Visit the Legislative Action Index for more information: Legislative

BACKGROUND INFORMATION - The School of the Americas is a military training facility for Latin American security personnel located at Fort Benning, Georgia that made headlines in 1996 when the Pentagon released training manuals used at the school that advocated torture, extortion and execution. Despite this shocking admission and hundreds of documented human rights abuses connected to soldiers trained at the school, no independent investigation into the training facility has ever taken place. Read more at SOAW