For Immediate Release
Hungry and Poor People Hit Hard by FY 2011 Budget Cuts
WASHINGTON - A Bread for the World analysis of the fiscal year 2011 budget agreement the Senate and House passed yesterday identifies cuts to 10 key programs that will severely affect hungry and poor people.
“Congress passed a budget agreement that includes roughly $2.5 billion in cuts to domestic and foreign assistance programs that are vital to vulnerable people,” said Rev. David Beckmann, president of Bread for the World. “While we are thankful they were not as drastic as originally proposed, these cuts will still severely impact people who can least afford them.”
Four domestic programs that provide assistance to hungry and poor people were cut by $967 million. They include $518 million from the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC); $54 million from Community Services Block Grants; $390 million from the LIHEAP Contingency Fund; and $5 million from Hunger-Free Communities Grants, completely eliminating the program.
Cuts to poverty-focused development assistance programs totaled $1.5 billion, with six key international programs experiencing cuts of $632.3 million. These programs include Food Aid (PL 480 and McGovern-Dole for $354 million); Development Assistance ($1 million); the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, or PEPFAR ($24.7 million); Global Health and Child Survival ($20 million); the Peace Corps ($25.8 million); and the Millennium Challenge Account ($206.8 million).
The FY 2011 budget deal also set the stage for challenging negotiations coming later this year for the FY 2012 budget and the debt ceiling.
“The FY 2011 cuts are just a small indication of what’s at stake for hungry and poor people in FY 2012,” said Beckmann. “Now more than ever, we need to form a circle of protection around programs that are essential to people in need.”
Beckmann agreed that we must work to cut our deficit, but he urged Republican and Democrat members of Congress to protect these programs as they negotiate to reduce the deficit and balance the budget. “Cutting programs vital to people in need will not address our nation’s deficit,” he said.
Download Bread's analysis of the budget agreement
Bread for the World is a collective Christian voice urging our nation's decision makers to end hunger at home and abroad. By changing policies, programs and conditions that allow hunger and poverty to persist, we provide help and opportunity far beyond the communities in which we live.