Tell Congress: Reject extreme cuts to humanitarian aid

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Right now, lifesaving assistance to tens of millions of people is on the line. The President’s fiscal year 2018 budget request slashes humanitarian aid by almost 50% during a time of unprecedented global needs. In the coming months, it will be up to Congress to decide whether they will accept these indefensible cuts or stand up in support of U.S. assistance for the world’s vulnerable families. International aid makes up only about 1% of the federal budget — yet it provides lifesaving assistance to tens of millions of people in need.

Now is not the time to make cuts to U.S. foreign aid. So much is at stake: This funding helps communities recover from devastating shocks like drought and flooding, and prevents the spread of disease and conflict. It can help some of the 65 million people who are displaced globally, and the millions more who are in need of emergency food assistance — including 20 million people at risk of starvation in South Sudan, Nigeria, Yemen, and Somalia. It is needed now more than ever.

You can help. Please — demand that your Member of Congress makes a stand for foreign aid, and remind them that cuts to U.S. foreign aid will jeopardize years of smart, non-partisan commitments to building a safer and more stable world. Congress must continue to fund the overall aid budget at the previous year's funding levels, especially for humanitarian and development programmes.

Your signature can help protect funding that is a lifeline for so many families at the very end of all hope. Urge your member of Congress to make a stand for foreign aid today.

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My Message

Dear Member of Congress,

As a constituent, I am writing with deep concern about proposed cuts to the International Affairs budget in FY2018, and ask you to fight for US leadership and robust foreign assistance funding that is saving lives and creating the conditions that prevent and mitigate famine and conflict.

In a year when the threat of famine is historically high, the US must continue to lead the fight against hunger by supporting diplomacy, humanitarian assistance, and development efforts. Famine has been declared in parts of South Sudan already, and without urgent humanitarian response, the country faces the harsh reality that a generation of children could be lost to hunger. Yemen, Nigeria and Somalia are also threatened by famine, and between just these four countries, 20 million people are at risk of starvation. Cutting lifesaving humanitarian assistance to accounts like International Disaster Assistance, Food for Peace/Title II, and Migration and Refugee Assistance would hamstring ongoing humanitarian relief efforts. Eliminating the Development Assistance Account and cutting the Economic Support Fund Account hamstrings the US’s ability to help communities build their resilience to natural disasters and invest in conflict prevention that mitigates violence.

I urge you to reject the President’s proposed cuts to foreign assistance and fight for no less than £36 billion for the International Affairs 150 Function in the Budget Resolution and robust “302bs” for the State Department and Foreign Operations and Agriculture Appropriations bills. This will ensure that the US government continues to be a global leader in responding to desperate humanitarian needs while also empowering families to lift themselves out of poverty and build resilience to shocks like drought and floods.

I look forward to hearing from you on how you are working to protect the most vulnerable families in the world in FY 2018. Thank you!

Sincerely,

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