Calling on Congress to End Program Cuts and Raise the Caps

AFSA recently signed onto a letter with 2,500 other national, state and local education, healthcare, law enforcement, transportation, safety, veterans and other organizations calling on Congress to end the drastic cuts to these critical programs under sequestration, and to raise the caps on investing in these programs and services that so many rely on. AFSA is a proud member of the Non-Defense Discretionary (NDD) United Coalition, which opposes sequestraion and drastic cuts to critical programs.

Read the full letter here

On Thursday, September 10th, AFSA attended a press event that coincided with the letter’s official release.

Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) spoke first, and emphasized the importance of avoiding continued, drastic cuts, and the need to invest in what matters most. He also warned of a potential government shutdown, if Congress is unable to reach an agreement on funding when the current Continuing Resolution expires on September 30th. To help avert the devastating effects of another government shutdown, Rep. Van Hollen has introduced the Prevent Government Shutdown Act. The legislation is aimed at avoiding a shutdown, and getting back to the business of investing in the American people.

Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) discussed how the cuts to non-defense discretionary programs affects every aspect of people’s lives. She is the senior democrat on the committee that funds these programs, and will do everything in her power to protect and strengthen them. “From low income children who deserve a level playing field, to unemployed workers who need job training, these critical programs and services must not but cut. Americans want Congress to raise the caps and it is our moral responsibility to do so. Congress will respond to outside pressure, so thank you for your advocacy and do not take no for an answer!”

Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) thanked the advocates for their loud voices and for understanding the real impact of sequestration and a potential government shutdown. “The last government shutdown in 2013 cost the nation $24 billion. We cannot get that money back and we cannot let republicans use their ideological concerns to force another one. We need an actual budget, we need to end sequestration, and we need to raise the caps on spending. 1 in 5 children are facing the harsh reality of poverty, yet republicans continue cutting programs that would benefit those in need the most. We cannot stand for their rob peter to pay Paul schemes. I am proud to support Rep. Van Hollen’s legislation and get back to investing in the American people!”

IMG_3029       IMG_3031       IMG_3032-2