Washington, D.C. (February 28, 2017) — Better World Campaign President Peter Yeo issued the following statement today following reports that the U.S. Office of Management and Budget will propose significant cuts in foreign affairs funding, which could also impact U.S. support for the United Nations:
“Foreign affairs funding encompasses only 1 percent of the total federal budget, and yet the return on investment is vast for U.S. national security objectives.
“The proposed cuts outlined by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget would bring foreign affairs funding to levels that pre-date the terrorist attacks of September 11 and threats from ISIS. Such reductions at a time of increased global challenges would severely jeopardize U.S. security, while reducing American leadership, influence, and strength. These funds also save millions of lives each year from preventable causes like malnutrition, malaria, and polio, while helping to address global threats such as violent extremism, pandemics, and climate change.
“Included in this account are U.S. funds for the United Nations, which amount to 0.1 percent of the federal budget. Working with our allies through the UN means that the U.S. can share the burden of solving global challenges. Although imperfect, no other organization has the reach and impact of the UN, from responding to the greatest refugee crisis since World War II to using diplomacy to prevent conflicts from breaking out, and supplying vaccines for 45 percent of the world’s children. This viewpoint is shared by many; the Better World Campaign, along with 100 other organizations, sent a letter today to Congress urging continued U.S. engagement at the UN. The letter notes that Republicans and Democrats have long recognized the value of various UN activities, from peacekeeping to humanitarian response to development assistance.
“The U.S. will not achieve peace, security, and prosperity at home by withdrawing from the world. American interests are never served by going it alone. We encourage Members of Congress on both sides of the aisle to speak out about the potential negative impacts such cuts in foreign affairs funding would have at home and abroad.”
About the Better World Campaign
The Better World Campaign works to foster a strong relationship between the U.S. and the UN to promote core American interests and build a more secure, prosperous, and healthy world. The Better World Campaign engages policymakers, the media, and the American public alike to increase awareness of the critical role played by the UN in world affairs and the importance of constructive U.S.-UN relations.