Letter to Ambassador Lanier

August 14, 2010

PO Box ___
_______, Uganda

August 12, 2010

Jerry P. Lanier,
Ambassador to the Republic of Uganda
______________
Kampala, Uganda

Dear Mr. Ambassador:

Thank you for all the important work you do in representing our nation in Uganda and in protecting American interests. The purpose of this letter is to bring to your attention both some unpleasant experiences that some of my Ugandan friends and host family have faced at the US embassy and the unprofessional conduct of the security personnel at the American Recreational Association.

My Ugandan friends and family who were treated with little respect felt they were labeled as potential illegal immigrants when they went for their interviews. When they narrated their experiences, I felt saddened and embarrassed that a person’s self-worth and dignity are judged based on their nationality or appearance. I find this degrading treatment disturbing and unacceptable in a US government agency.

I experienced the pain my Ugandan friends and family felt when I found myself in their shoes this past weekend while I was at the American Recreational Association. Since I brought neither my passport nor my Peace Corps ID, the security personnel at the entrance subjected me to an endless tirade of criticism. I respect that the security personnel take their jobs and their dedication to protect the facility seriously; however, I found their conduct unprofessional and demeaning.

I believe everyone who visits any US Embassy or a facility funded by the US government should be treated in a courteous and professional manner. Combining professionalism and courtesy in every day interactions with visitors and while following security protocol will create a positive image of Americans at home and abroad. I request that you bring this to the attention of all your staff members.

Thank you.

Sincerely,
_______________

Peace Corps Volunteer
2009-2011

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