Bread Monthly Conference call (3/7 @6pm) and House Budget cuts that target the poor

March 4, 2011 at 6:59 am Leave a comment

Bread for the World Monthly Conference Call for the Western Region

Monday March 7  @ 6 – 6:30PM

Each month we will get an update from Robin and Matt, our Portland based western regional organizers. They keep us up to date on the latest congressional news, and there is always an educational focus along with ideas for action. We also get the chance to hear about what other groups in the western region are up to. To dial in, simply call 1-800-704-9804. When prompted, enter 78674441#

See the archive of past monthly callsMatt Newell-Ching and Robin Stephenson
Your Western Regional Bread for the World Organizers,
Contact Matt or Robin to get on the email list for monthly reminders about the call.

The budget conflict is quickly approaching the crisis stage with a government shutdown looming in two weeks. The house budget contains major cuts to programs that benefit the poor as well as to educational programs like college grants and loans. We must speak up now to oppose these cuts.

Example cuts to development assistance programs contained in the house budget

Global Health and Child Survival — $365 million. Bread for the World helped start this fund in the early 1980s, and millions of people are alive today because of these investments in cheap, effective interventions.

Millennium Challenge Account — $315 million. Nations like Ghana are on track to cut poverty in half and meet the Millennium Development Goals in part because of the MCA, which encourages good governance, transparency, and participation in civil society. Bread members helped start the MCA during our 2003 Offering of Letters campaign.

Food Aid and McGovern Dole International School Lunch — $946 million. These cuts would eliminate feeding programs for 18 million of the world’s hungriest and poorest people, including 15 million people suffering from hunger due to natural disasters and conflicts and 2.5 million children who get school meals through the McGovern-Dole program. Bread has historically argued for reforms in food aid to allow regional purchases of food, but cutting food aid without an alternative throws the baby out with the bathwater.

Development Assistance — $746 million. The account includes programs such as agricultural development, microfinance, education, and safe water. It builds capacity so that in the long run, local people can reduce poverty on their own.

House budget cuts ‘short-sighted,’ endanger lives of poor

Mercy Corps CEO Neal Keny-Guyer responded to the House of Representatives FY11 Continuing Resolution for the federal budget, and its potential impact on international affairs funding. The bill, which will fund the government through September 30, 2011, calls for a 19 percent decrease in core international affairs spending levels from FY 2010. Mr. Keny-Guyer responded as follows:

“We are deeply disappointed in the House’s cuts to the FY 2011 budget, which endanger the lives of millions of impoverished people around the world, and do nothing to make aid smarter or more effective. The decreases in spending would significantly erode the US’s ability respond to global disasters, provide food for families in need, and fill the urgent needs of refugees fleeing conflict or instability.

Read the rest of the article



Entry filed under: Events.

Congressional update 3/2. Don’t balance the budget on the backs of the poor. Ash Wednesday message from Bread President- David Beckmann

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