Statement from Mercy Corps Interim CEO Beth deHamel in Response to the President’s Budget Request

February 10, 2020

"We are disappointed that the Trump Administration has proposed cutting U.S. foreign aid, ignoring growing global humanitarian needs. Some 70.8 million people have been forced to flee their homes because of conflict and persecution worldwide. Climate change continues to drive instability, disproportionately affecting the world’s most vulnerable. The United Nations estimates that climate change will ultimately cost the world up to $300 billion annually by 2050. With deadly conflicts persisting from Syria to Yemen to Nigeria, an unprecedented 200 million people worldwide will be in need of humanitarian aid this year. Over 820 million people went hungry last year, largely due to conflict. 

Given these trends, we do not support the Administration’s 22 percent cut to the foreign assistance budget. These cuts ignore the will of the bipartisan majority in Congress, public opinion, as well as military commanders and diplomatic officials -- all of whom support fully funding foreign aid. 

We urge Congress to reject the Administration’s request and ensure that the International Affairs budget is fully funded, both to address global short term relief needs and longer term sustainable development solutions. U.S. government investments empower communities and the world’s most vulnerable to find their own solutions to poverty, disease, hunger, and conflict."