Spotlight Exclusives

Two Unique Efforts Aim to Shift Public Opinion on the Need for Cuts, Cuts, and More Cuts

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In the current political climate the word “cut” has morphed into a synonym and solution for the budget deficit. Alternatives to cuts, such as upgraded or new revenue streams, have garnered scant media attention. But two notable strategies aim to raise the awareness of the impact of budget cuts on poverty and to set the stage for policy alternatives: <?xml:namespace prefix = o />


·         The Half in Ten campaign and the Coalition on Human Needs are working to “show the very real consequences of these abstract numbers being thrown around Washington, D.C.” by gathering stories about how programs on the chopping block affect people. The stories offer personal accounts of the real-life impact of programs ranging from Pell grants to energy assistance.


·         Ambassador Tony Hall is returning to a time-tested approach of his own. In 1993, then-Congressmen Hall fasted for 22 days to protest the elimination of the Select Committee on Hunger and to raise awareness of the prevalence of hunger both domestically and globally. Out of that fast came the creation of the Congressional Hunger Center, currently co-chaired by Rep. Jo Ann Emerson (R-MO) and Rep. James P. McGovern (D-MA). Now after nearly two decades, Ambassador Hall is embarking on another fast and encouraging others to join him in a “Circle of Protection around programs benefitting the most vulnerable people here in America and around the world.”


Both efforts aim to elevate the issues of poverty and hunger in the minds of Americans and politicians so that cutting programs is no longer seen as the only viable solution for taming the budget deficit.


Posted by Jodie


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