Global Laser Talk August 2010

Millennium Development Goals Summit

Next month, President Obama will join world’s leaders in New York City to review progress and revitalize plans to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs for short). The MDGs are a blueprint for cutting extreme poverty in half, combating disease and increasing access to education around the globe by 2015.

We know some startling facts about the state of the MDGs. Incidences of tuberculosis should be decreasing, and yet TB continues to soar. In 2008, more than 1.8 million people died of TB and it continues to be the number one killer of people with AIDS. We should be achieving universal access to primary school for all the world’s children. This is critical to reducing extremism and promoting global security. Yet 72 million children still remain out of school today.

Last year President Obama vowed to come to this year’s meeting with a bold plan to achieve the MDGs. Last month we got our first look at that plan. Unfortunately, it is not a plan. Instead, it is a list of vague generalizations about innovation and sustainability.

Because of this, we are not on track to reach these critical goals, I had hoped President Obama would release a robust roadmap for reaching the MDGs. Instead we are getting broken promises and platitudes.

Now is the time for urgent action and leadership on the critical global issues of our time. President Obama and other leaders must wake up and get serious. I hope your newspaper will add its voice to this important debate. Can I send you more information about this?