Wednesday, November 28, 2012

'Fiscal Cliff' a Danger to Anti-Hunger Programs

The fiscal cliff is the buzzword in the news these days.   It refers to the dilemma facing  Congress and President Barack Obama, who have until the end of the year to come up with a deficit reduction plan.

For the anti-hunger and anti-poverty community this is worrisome because the lack of an agreement by the end of the year would trigger steep cuts in spending for domestic programs (as well as defense).

There would also be across-the-board tax increases that would do away with rates set during the administration of President George W. Bush and restore higher tax rates in place during President Bill Clinton's administration when the economy was robust and the federal government had a budget surplus.   Read more about ongoing debate from the Associated Press and Reuters

So what can you do?  Make a lot of noise!

One way is to Call Congress.

Call your U.S. senators and your U.S. representative today! Use Bread for the World's toll-free number (1-800-826-3688) and tell them to pass a budget deal that includes a circle of protection around programs for hungry and poor people in the United States and around the world.

Explain that any deal must
  • Explicitly protect low-income entitlement programs for hungry and poor people—like SNAP (formerly food stamps), the Earned Income Tax Credit, and the Child Tax Credit—against cuts or harmful changes. 
  • Include additional tax revenue, balanced with responsible spending cuts, so that our country can reduce its deficits while continuing its commitment to reducing hunger and poverty in the United States and around the world..
  • Prevent further cuts to non-defense discretionary programs, including poverty-focused development assistance, international food aid, and the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC).
Or write a letter to the editor. Here is a great piece from the Bread communications staff on how to get started.

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