On May 15, the House of Representatives passed the HEROES Act, a new $3 trillion emergency stimulus bill. While it includes important provisions for vulnerable communities in the U.S., it fails to include any funding for foreign assistance for impoverished countries sinking under the weight of the COVID-19 crisis.
While the U.S. attends to this health emergency at home, it is essential that we also support impoverished countries which are struggling to manage this new crisis as it compounds existing crises of food insecurity, crushing debt, political instability, and inadequate health infrastructure. Reports by UN-affiliated agencies indicate that 265 million people could face starvation by the end of the year and half a billion people could be pushed into poverty by the growing economic crisis.
Experts are calling for Congress to include $12 billion in foreign assistance and other financial assistance mechanisms in the next U.S. federal stimulus bill to help support health systems, including WHO programs, and mitigate the growing food shortage in impoverished countries. Global cooperation on this crisis is necessary to help protect the most vulnerable around the world and to make us all safer from the spread of the virus.
Tell Congress today: Provide necessary assistance to impoverished countries to mitigate the impending food and health crises for the world's most vulnerable people.
Read our analysis of what Congress should do for COVID-19 assistance abroad.
Photo, COVID-19 response in Madagascar, from the World Bank collection on Flickr