Because this is so directly tied to the many news items we have posted about Puerto Rico’s debt crisis and the ongoing suffering in Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and other Caribbean islands after Hurricanes Maria and Irma, it is my personal choice to share the following petition addressed to David Swensen, Chief Investment Officer at Yale University. I hope that this will be the tip of the iceberg and that other leaders in the investment world will follow suit.
Don’t let Yale University’s hedge-fund money managers and major donors lock Puerto Rico into years of poverty and misery.
Months after Puerto Rico was devastated by Hurricanes Irma and Maria, the island’s ongoing financial crisis makes recovery nearly impossible. While many communities across the United States have contributed to relief efforts on the island and welcomed Puerto Ricans forced to leave their homes, a group of investors is seeking to profit at Puerto Rico’s expense. Yale University’s tremendous wealth and influence in the investment world put it in a unique position among these investors.
Puerto Rico is being sued by hedge funds that are longtime managers of Yale’s $27.2 billion endowment, as well as firms owned by some of the university’s leading donors. The lawsuits seek to force payment of debts the island will never be able to afford to pay. But rather than seeking to extract profit from the devastated island, Yale can make a different choice and provide leadership in achieving meaningful financial relief for the people of Puerto Rico.
We call on Yale to provide relief by disclosing any holding in Puerto Rican debt; canceling any Puerto Rican debt held as Yale assets; and using its influence to urge its major donors and other institutional investors to do the same.
For photo above and related article, see http://observer.com/2017/05/puerto-ricos-debt-crisis-us-promesa/