Diverse Coalition Unites to Protect Poor People in Budget Debate
At a critical juncture in the deficit reduction talks a diverse coalition of over 40 prominent international and domestic NGOs have joined the leaders of dozens of national faith organizations in calling on the Obama administration and congressional leadership to protect programs benefitting poor and hungry people both here and abroad from budget cuts.
"Attempting to balance the budget on the backs of the world's poor betrays our nation's values and hurts our interests. Fully funding these programs is the right thing to do and the wisest path to long-term prosperity, security and budget health,” stated Samuel A. Worthington, InterAction’s president and CEO.
In an open letter to policymakers involved in defect reduction negotiations, these groups expressed support for six principles first outlined by a group of faith leaders known as the Circle of Protection coalition, saying:
"…we believe the moral measure of the [budget] debate is how the most vulnerable among us fare. Poor and hungry people do not have powerful lobbies, but they do have the most compelling claim on our national conscience and common resources. As people of conscience we have an obligation to defend this claim in civic discourse, to join with others to insist that programs that serve the most vulnerable in our nation and around the world are protected.”