WASHINGTON (Nov. 7, 2012) — InterAction, the largest alliance of U.S.-based international NGOs, congratulates President Barack Obama on his victory Tuesday and hopes his new administration will commit to a bold agenda to eliminate global poverty.
One of the president’s most urgent tasks will be tackling upcoming budget negotiations and stopping sequestration cuts set to take effect in January 2013. U.S. development and relief assistance represents the generosity and compassion of the American people, and has helped millions escape poverty. Cuts to these programs would literally cost lives.
“While development and relief assistance was not on the ballot, Americans have shown time and again how much they care about those less fortunate around the world,” said Samuel A. Worthington, president and CEO of InterAction. “We hope President Obama’s legacy will be one of lifting millions out of poverty and allowing them to reach their full potential,” he added.
“Averting sequestration cuts, which threaten to gut many domestic and foreign programs alike, will require the leadership of both the president and U.S. Congress. In negotiating the FY2013 budget, President Obama should urge Congress to adopt funding levels for the international affairs account that the Senate Appropriations Committee already has approved. In the event of cuts, he should fight to ensure that development and relief accounts are not cut disproportionately.
“These poverty-focused accounts, which amount to less than 1 percent of the total U.S. budget, will not solve the deficit problem,” said Worthington.
In its second term, the Obama administration should also strengthen its signature programs, such as Feed the Future, an initiative that supports smallholder farmers and can set the world on the path toward feeding itself.
“We also urge the administration to work closely with U.S. civil society organizations. The NGO community has a great deal to offer the administration in terms of experience, knowledge and relationships with local communities abroad. Efforts to eliminate poverty can be significantly scaled up if we work together,” added Worthington.
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About InterAction InterAction is the largest alliance of U.S.-based nongovernmental international organizations, with more than 190 members. Our members operate in every developing country, working with local communities to overcome poverty and suffering by helping to improve their quality of life. Visit www.interaction.org.
About World Vision:World Vision is a Christian humanitarian organization dedicated to working with children, families, and their communities worldwide reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty and injutice. We serve the world's poor — regardless of religion, race, ethnicity or gender. For more information on their efforts, visit WorldVision.org/press or follow them on Twitter at @WorldVisionNews