What We’re Watching in Congress

Members of Congress spent August in their states and districts, connecting with constituents and their communities. As they return to Washington for a busy month, here are several issues we will be keeping an eye on:

Progress on FY2020 Federal Funding

In July, Congressional leaders and the White House reached a top-line spending deal for FY2020. Current funding for the federal government runs out on September 30, 2019. 1,000 Days will continue to engage with lawmakers and partners to ensure they prioritize investments in the nutrition and health of women and young children, specifically gains in global nutrition funding, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) breastfeeding promotion and the WIC Breastfeeding Peer Counselor Program.

Progress on Child Nutrition Reauthorization

Over the recess, Senators were drafting marker bills to be considered in a legislative package reauthorizing the Child Nutrition Act. One such proposal, the Wise Investment in our Children (or WIC) Act (S. 2358) was introduced by Senators Robert Casey (D-PA) and Susan Collins (R-ME). It outlines a number of opportunities to strengthen and expand the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children, including an expansion of WIC eligibility for new moms to two years post-partum and the streamlining of burdensome certification paperwork. 1,000 Days will continue to educate and engage lawmakers on both sides of the aisle on the importance of nutrition for moms and young children.

E&C hearing on bipartisan maternal health bills

The House Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee held a hearing on four bills related to maternal health, including two that are supported by 1,000 Days:

  • Mothers and Offspring Maternal Mortality and Morbidity Awareness (MOMMA’s) Act (R. 1897) led by Congresswoman Robin Kelly (D-IL)
  • Quality Care for Moms and Babies Act (R. 1551) led by Congressmen Eliot Engel (D-NY) and Steve Stivers (R-OH)

1,000 Days is encouraged by Congress’ ongoing attention on the need to improve maternal health care. We will continue to share the stories of moms in our community to highlight the importance of quality health care, and to encourage Congressional leaders to make the health and wellbeing of moms a national priority.

Congressional support for breastfeeding

Senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Congressman Adam Schiff (D-CA) introduced resolutions supported by 1,000 Days, acknowledging the important health benefits of breastfeeding for moms and babies (H.Res.545 and S.Res.299). We were excited to see Members of Congress support breastfeeding families and we will keep lifting up the breastfeeding stories of moms in our community.