Congress is currently crafting the federal government’s budget for FY 2017. As they do so, I urge Sen. Jim Risch and Rep. Mike Simpson to protect cost-effective, lifesaving programs that fight poverty and disease throughout the world. I have personally witnessed young children in Haiti starving and malnourished through no fault of their own. Thankfully, U.S. leadership has led the way to fight preventable deaths from AIDS, malaria and malnutrition. For less than 1 percent of the U.S. budget, we are saving millions of lives. But millions more lives are at risk. All human life is precious, and where you are born shouldn’t determine whether you live or die. U.S. foreign assistance is not only the right thing to do, it’s also good for our economy and our national security. So, Risch and Simpson, please protect lifesaving programs like the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and malaria, and our nutrition aid as the budget process moves forward.
Ali Escalante, Boise