Dear Chairman Risch, Ranking Member Menendez, and Members of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations:
We, the undersigned __ human rights and civil society organizations, write to express grave concerns about Professor Robert A. Destro, nominated by President Trump on January 16, 2019, to be Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor. If confirmed, Prof. Destro would head the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor (DRL) which leads U.S. government efforts to promote democracy, protect human rights and international religious freedom, and advance labor rights globally. Prof. Destro’s record evinces a strong hostility to the health and human rights of women, girls, and LGBTI individuals. We do not believe that a nominee with this record should be confirmed to lead the State Department’s Bureau dedicated to protecting, defending, and promoting the human rights of all persons around the world, especially members of vulnerable communities like women, girls, and LGBTI persons. We strongly urge you to oppose his confirmation based the clear conflict between his record and the Bureau’s mission.