Today, Congress passed, and President Biden will sign, the fiscal year 2023 Omnibus. This bill not only funds federal government programs and foreign assistance but also includes important provisions to support maternal and child nutrition globally. We applaud the passage of this bipartisan bill while recognizing there is still work to be done when the new Congress begins in January.
We are thankful for Congress’ support and inclusion of the Providing Urgent Maternal Protections (PUMP) for Nursing Mothers Act and the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act in the Omnibus. These bipartisan and broadly supported pieces of legislation provide protections for birthing and lactating people to maintain healthy pregnancies, recover safely from childbirth, and return to the workplace while supporting their breastfeeding goals. Their inclusion is a win for families across the country.
While we celebrate the new protections for families, we also are compelled to keep raising our voices for all the provisions that will create the best possible first 1,000 days for pregnant and birthing people, babies and toddlers. While the Omnibus maintains the enhanced WIC fruit and vegetable benefits and establishes a permanent summer EBT program, we believe Congress missed a chance to streamline and modernize access to WIC services and strengthen the Child and Adult Care Food Program by not comprehensively reauthorizing these child nutrition programs.
We are also grateful for the United States commitment to combatting malnutrition globally. While the global nutrition subaccount received a modest increase of $5 million – a step in the right direction. However, we stand by the compelling case that $300 million is needed to meet the moment during the food and nutrition crises too many are experiencing today. We encourage Congress to continue to expand U.S. leadership on global nutrition and supply programs with the necessary funding to meet dire circumstances.
1,000 Days looks forward to a continued partnership with both Congress and the Administration to ensure families all over the globe have a healthy first 1,000 Days.