June 29, 2020

Castro, Omar Urge USAID to Rescind its Appointment of Mark Kevin Lloyd as USAID Religious Freedom Adviser

WASHINGTONCongressman Joaquin Castro (TX-20),Chairman of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, Vice Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, and member of the House Intelligence and Education and Labor Committees, and Congresswoman Ilhan Omar (MN-5),today urged USAID to rescind its appointment of Mark Kevin Lloyd as USAID Religious Freedom Adviser. Mr. Lloyd has a proven track record of prejudice towards those of the Islamic faith and Muslim majority countries, discrimination that is antithetical to USAID’s mission of global development and religious freedom: 

“The appointment of Mark Kevin Lloyd undermines USAID’s clear, global commitment to religious freedom as a human right. We should not be rewarding Mr. Lloyd’s pattern of prejudice and bigotry against those of the Islamic faith. People around the world desperately need USAID’s advocacy and assistance. But those who espouse discrimination should not be given a platform and especially not in an organization that aims to represent America’s promise of liberty and justice for all. USAID works with countries that are 32% majority Muslim, and all of those countries need our help. I fear with Mr. Lloyd at the helm those countries will face further discrimination. I strongly urge USAID to remove Mr. Lloyd from his position as USAID’s Religious Freedom Adviser effective immediately,” said Congressman Castro. 

“Mark Kevin Lloyd, who has a long history of promoting hateful, Islamophobic rhetoric has no businesses promoting religious freedom abroad,” said Congresswoman Omar. “Someone who doesn’t recognize the importance of religious diversity in our country cannot credibly promote religious freedom internationally. This appointment will severely weaken USAID’s ability to assist the world’s poorest countries including many predominately Muslim nations. This appointment must be rescinded immediately.”

Full text of the letter can be found here.

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Press Contact

Katherine Schneider (Castro) (202)-836-1086