1,000 Days applauds Congress on the passage of the fiscal year 2017 (FY17) omnibus appropriations bill, which reaffirms the vital role of U.S. global leadership in saving lives and helping the world’s most vulnerable people. The bill includes funding for global health, development and humanitarian assistance programs at the same or, in some cases, higher levels. It sends a clear message that Members of Congress on both sides of the aisle believe in the mission and impact of those investments.
We remain deeply concerned, however, by the Administration’s proposed cuts to the international affairs account in FY18. The proposed cuts come at a time when the world is facing a vast humanitarian crisis and famine that is taking the lives of young children each day. The need has never been clearer: UNICEF reports that 1.4 million children are at risk of severe acute malnutrition in Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, and Yemen, increasing their risk of death by 11 times as compared to their healthy counterparts. Beyond the immediate humanitarian crises, malnutrition is responsible for 45 percent of deaths of children under age five around the world. It also leads to cognitive and physical stunting in young children, thereby impacting their life-long health, earning and learning potential.
Now, more than ever, we look to bipartisan champions in Congress to once again stand firm against the Administration’s proposed cuts to critical investments that save and improve lives, fight disease, and promote stability, security and economic growth.