U.S. Poverty Weekly Update March 12, 2019
Quote of the Week
“President Trump is expected to call for deep cuts to non-defense programs while increasing defense spending in his FY2020 budget plan. We need to reject these spending cuts and invest in housing assistance and other critical services that reduce poverty.”
– RESULTS Bremerton, WA volunteer Donna Munro in a March 7 letter to the editor in the Kitsap Sun
Got Two Minutes? Get Media Telling Congress to Invest in Housing
Yesterday, the Trump Administration released its FY2020 budget proposal (see details below). The president is proposing a huge 18 percent cut to Housing and Urban Development programs, including cuts to the Housing Choice Voucher program, putting housing assistance for thousands of low-income families at risk. But the power to do this rests with Congress. And Congress is answerable to you.
The budget release will get media coverage this week. Use this coverage to get your own letters to the editor published urging Congress to reject the Trump Administration’s budget cuts and instead invest more in housing assistance.
TAKE ACTION: Take two minutes to submit a letter to the editor urging your members of Congress by name to make housing a priority in budget negotiations. Use our online media action to send your letter today. Be sure to send a message to your action networks urging them to submit letters as well. When you get published, please report your success in our new RESULTS Grassroots Media form.
Got Ten Minutes? Ask for Meetings for Next Week’s Recess (March Action)
With the release of the Trump Administration budget this week, the formal budget process in Congress is underway. Sadly, the president is calling for deep cuts to anti-poverty programs, including programs that help low-income families secure affordable housing. Congress must now decide what parts of the budget to accept and what parts to reject or amend. This means that members of Congress need to hear from you. Thankfully, you have a prime opportunity to weigh in directly with them next week when they go on recess.
Contact your congressional offices to make or follow-up on a face-to-face meeting request. Be polite but persistent in asking for an in-person meeting next week. If they cannot give you a sit-down meeting, ask if your members of Congress are holding any town halls or public events you can attend. If there’s nothing, ask for a meeting on the next possible date (Congress will be on recess again April 15-26). You have the power to set the agenda for this year’s budget – use it.
TAKE ACTION: Take ten minutes to request face-to-face meetings for the March recess. Your primary request will focus on funding for housing assistance. The March Action, our meeting request (online or Word doc), and our Legislator Lookup tool (to find schedulers) are there to help you. Find additional resources, including lobby request sheets, on our lobbying page. Finally, please contact Meredith Dodson when you get a meeting scheduled; she will provide you coaching on the specifics of your request.
Got Twenty Minutes? Invite New People to Your Upcoming Lobby Meetings
You know what is one of the best things you can do for a friend? Invite him or her to a RESULTS lobby meeting. It may sound odd but it’s true. We live in a time of great uncertainty, fear, and hopelessness. More people every day are feeling left behind and unrepresented. And from what we read in the news every day, it’s easy to understand why.
But a lobby meeting upends that cynicism and doubt. RESULTS founder Sam Daley-Harris has said that perhaps the greatest crisis we face in the world today is why so few of us believe that we can be agents of change. A lobby meeting is your courage shining through – the courage to believe that you can create change. It tells the people in the room – and you – that you have a voice and that you will use it. Imagine the gift that is to someone who believes they can’t do it. Your example shows them that they can.
TAKE ACTION: Make the most of your RESULTS experience by sharing it with others. Take twenty minutes reach out to people you know – friends, family, recent people inquiring about RESULTS, and anyone you think would benefit – and invite them to attend an upcoming lobby meeting with you. If you don’t have a meeting scheduled soon, let them know you are working on one and would they like to attend an upcoming RESULTS meeting to get ready for it. If you need additional assistance in outreach strategies, please contact Jos Linn.
The Trump Administration’s FY2020 Budget Proposal
Beyond the cuts to housing noted above, the Trump Administration’s FY2020 budget makes other drastic changes many programs RESULTS supports. It would:
- Cut the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly food stamps) by nearly $220 billion over the next ten years.*
- Impose new restrictions on Medicaid while also giving states more flexibility in reducing Medicaid enrollment and benefits. This would result in cuts exceeding $1 trillion over the next decade. The proposal would also repeal the Affordable Care Act and its Medicaid expansion.
- Make permanent the 2017 tax cuts for individuals, giving the wealthy an even larger tax cut than what they have already received.
- Cut child care, education, Social Security Disability Insurance, and Supplemental Security Income, and underfund the 2020 U.S. Census, jeopardizing an accurate count (which then impacts congressional representation).
The Center on Budget and Policy summed up this budget proposal quite accurately – a disturbing vision. It is why your meetings and media this month pushing back are essential in making sure we protect programs vital to low-income Americans.
*Note that the comment period on the SNAP rule limiting states ability to get waivers for work requirements in times of economic downturn closes April 2. Submit your comment opposing the rule today.
Become an Investor in Change in March. We’re only 12 donors away from securing a $10,000 match ($500 for every new monthly donor in March) for our March Investors in Change campaign. Become an Investor in Change today and help us make the most of this generous gift. Go to our monthly donor page to sign up today!
Register for the RESULTS Conference. Read news about the amazing offerings to advocates at this year’s RESULTS International Conference, July 13-16 in Washington, DC. Then go to www.resultsconference.org to register today!
Welcome Hunger Fellow Mackenzie Aime. RESULTS is thrilled to welcome our newest Emerson National Hunger Fellow Mackenzie Aime to our Campaigns Team for the next few months. Mackenzie is a native of Boise, ID who recently graduated from Emory University in Atlanta. During college, she studied issues of food justice and how the food system creates disparities along race, class, and gender lines. She also worked with non-profit organizations on various local hunger and food initiatives. For the last six months, Mackenzie has lived in McDowell County, WV for her fellowship field placement, focusing on community organizing to create a foodshed improvement plan for the county She is excited to be at RESULTS to see the impact of an organization working on grassroots activism and policy research. We are excited she chose to share her skills and talents with us. She will work in the RESULTS DC office through July. Welcome, Mackenzie!
Monday, March 18-Friday, March 22: Congressional Recess. Submit your meeting requests today.
RESULTS New Advocate Orientation, Tuesday, March 12 (12:00pm ET) and Wednesday, March 20 (8:30pm ET). Get started at: https://results.salsalabs.org/volunteer/index.html.
Tuesday, March 19, U.S. Poverty Free Agents Calls, 1:00 pm and 8:00 pm ET. Join at: https://results.zoom.us/j/324294681 or dial by phone at (929) 436-2866 or (669) 900-6833, Meeting ID: 324 294 681.
Thursday, March 21: Quiet Leadership Book Club, 9:00 pm ET. To join, go to https://results.zoom.us/j/482992263. You can also join by phone at (929) 436-2866 or (669) 900-6833, meeting ID 482 992 263.
Tuesday, April 2: RESULTS U.S. Poverty National Webinar, 8:00 pm ET. Join at: https://results.zoom.us/j/873308801 or dial (929) 436-2866 or (669) 900-6833, Meeting ID: 873 308 801. Find recordings and slides from previous webinars on the National Webinars page.
Monday, April 15-Friday, April 26: Congressional Recess. Submit your meeting requests today.
Saturday, July 13-Tuesday, July 16, 2019: RESULTS International Conference. Register today at www.resultsconference.org!
Find other events on the RESULTS Events Calendar.
U.S. Poverty Staff time out of the office: Meredith Dodson, March 29, April 15-19. Jos Linn, March 20-22.
Learn more about the RESULTS Experts on Poverty.
RESULTS Staff directory.