U.S. Poverty Weekly Update May 7, 2013
New and Urgent in This Week’s Update (Two-Ten-Twenty Actions)
Latest from Washington, DC
Join us this Saturday, May 11, for the RESULTS National Conference Call. After a successful month working to protect the EITC and CTC in tax reform discussions, return to the issue of hunger in the U.S. this month. Congress is scheduled to begin working on a Farm Bill this month, which includes the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). We anticipate drastic cuts to SNAP in the House version and some in the Senate as well. On the call, we’ll discuss the current state of the Farm Bill and SNAP and how we can effective push back at these efforts. We’ll also review the May Action and hear from volunteers on their recent activities. We look forward to you joining us for this important call.
TAKE ACTION: Take two minutes and remind your local RESULTS group about the RESULTS monthly national conference call this Saturday, May 11 at 12:30 pm ET. Coordinate with your group where you will meet for the call. To join the call, dial (888) 409-6709 and once connected to the operator, ask for the RESULTS National Conference Call. Plan to call in no later than 12:27 pm ET to give time to the operator to connect you with the call.
We will have the May 2013 Conference Call Overview slides available later this week. Go to our national conference call page on the RESULTS website to download the presentation before the call.
Got Ten Minutes? Tell Congress to Protect SNAP from Farm Bill Cuts (May Action)
Congress returns to Washington, DC this week and one of the big agenda items is reauthorization of the Farm Bill. The Farm Bill is a mammoth piece of legislation that will set U.S. agricultural policy for the next five years. It includes a myriad of programs, including crop subsidies, rural development, conservation and, of course, food assistance. This last section includes the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly food stamps). SNAP is the largest program in the Farm Bill and is one of our most effective tools against poverty in America. It currently serves around 47 million people per month, nearly half of them children. According to the U.S. Census, SNAP lifted 4.7 million people out of poverty in 2011.
Despite this success, SNAP has a big target on its back. When the House and Senate begin “marking up” their respective Farm Bills this month, there will be proposals to cut SNAP. The Senate Farm Bill is expected to include a $4 billion cut to SNAP (over 10 years), similar to the cuts last year’s Senate Farm Bill proposal. If enacted, it’s estimated that 500,000 people could see a drop in their SNAP benefits by an average of $90 per month. In the House, the news is much grimmer. The House Agriculture Committee Farm Bill could include a whopping $20 billion in cuts to SNAP. Estimates are that these cuts would force over 2 million people off SNAP (for details about the cuts, see the May Action).
The Senate could begin marking up their Farm Bill proposal as soon as this Thursday. The House is expected to begin work on theirs on May 15. We need to send a strong message to both the House and Senate that hunger in America is still a serious problem and cutting SNAP is not the way to solve it.
TAKE ACTION: Take ten minutes to call your House and Senate agriculture aides in defense of SNAP. For RESULTS groups, your designated House and Senate point people should make these calls. When calling, tell the aides that you want their bosses to urge House and Senate Agriculture Committee members to oppose any cuts to SNAP during their upcoming Farm Bill mark-ups. The May Action has all the talking points and background information you’ll need for your calls. In addition to calls, all members of your RESULTS group should send letters or e-mails to the House and Senate urging them to protect SNAP.
Please note that next Tuesday, May 14, there will be a national call-in day to the House about protecting SNAP. We will have more details later this week and on this weekend’s national conference call. In the meantime, please alert your local action networks, asking them to be ready to call next Tuesday in defense of SNAP.
You can keep up with the latest developments on our SNAP Campaign on our Recent Developments in Nutrition and Health Care Legislation page and our current U.S. Poverty Campaigns Summary.
Thank you to everyone who has already registered for the 2013 RESULTS International Conference. We have around 250 people registered so far, which is halfway to our goal! While the early bird registration is no longer available, the regular conference registration is still a steal at only $240. This price is good through June 15. We hope you will join us in Washington, DC for this year’s conference.
REGISTER TODAY for this year’s conference!
We also want your help in helping new people come to the conference, especially young leaders you know. If you or someone you know is 18–27 years old, please urge them to apply for the REAL Change Scholarship. This scholarship provides the opportunity for young RESULTS activists and potential new activists to attend the RESULTS International Conference 2013 for a fraction of the overall cost. REAL Change attendees will participate in regular conference activities, including Lobby Day. They will also get additional training before and after the regular conference agenda. Last year, we have 50 young leaders come to the conference, who added new energy and enthusiasm to the whole conference. This year, we want 75 REAL Changers to attend. The deadline to apply is only one week away (May 15). Help us introduce RESULTS to a new generation of advocates.
TAKE ACTION: If you are 18‐27 years old, plan to attend this year’s 2013 RESULTS International Conference by applying for the REAL Change Scholarship. We want you with us in Washington, DC this summer! The deadline to apply is May 15 so download and submit your application today!
If you know people who would qualify for the REAL Change Program, please forward them information about the scholarship and urge them to apply. Here is an example of a message you could send by e-mail or Facebook to the young leaders you know:
As someone who cares about children and families in poverty, I invite you to join me at the 2013 RESULTS International Conference in Washington, DC this summer. The RESULTS conference is a great opportunity for you to learn more about solutions to poverty, how to effectively advocate for them, and then sitting down face-to-face with your members of Congress urging them to implement those solutions. And the great thing is, they have a program that can help you get there at a minimal cost. The REAL Change Scholarship is designed to help young leaders like you (18–27 yrs old) come experience the RESULTS conference for yourself. It covers all but $200 of your registration, travel and hotel expenses. I think you would be a great candidate and I know you’d have a great time at the conference. Just go to the REAL Change Scholarship page to download the application. The deadline to apply is May 15. I hope you’ll apply for the program and join me in Washington, DC, this summer!
And even if you’re not 18–27 years old, we want you at the conference too. REGISTER TODAY for 2013 RESULTS International Conference!
RESULTS staff are traveling this weeks to expand our amazing volunteer network. We would love your help. If you know people in the following places, please get in contact with the persons listed and help us grow RESULTS!
Nashville, TN, Tonight, May 7 at 6:00 pm CT. Myrdin Thompson was in Memphis today meeting with advocates to get a new group started in western Tennessee. She will be traveling to Nashville this evening to host an informal “coffee chat” about RESULTS. The meeting is at Crema Coffee “Brewtique”, 15 Hermitage Ave in Nashville. If you know anyone in Nashville, encourage them to stop by and chat with Myrdin. For more details about her work in Memphis and Nashville, please contact Myrdin at (502) 295-1315, [email protected].
Boston, MA, Thursday May 9 at 6:30 pm ET. Jenny Martin will be traveling to Boston later this week for a RESULTS Outreach meeting in the Boston suburb of Weymouth. The meeting will be held at the Weymouth Public Library, Tufts Branch, 46 Broad St, Weymouth, MA. If you know people in Boston, please urge them to attend. You can even share our RESULTS Boston Event Facebook page as an invitation. Jenny is also working on strengthening our presence in Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont. For more details, please contact Jenny at (413) 774-1707, [email protected].
We are also working with advocates in Orange County, CA, New York City, Albuquerque, Kentucky, and Ohio to start new groups. We’d be happy to reach out to people you know in these areas and introduce them to RESULTS. If you know anyone in these or other areas, please contact Jos Linn at [email protected], (515) 2883622.
It is a new month and that means a new round of RESULTS Introductory Calls will begin. RESULTS Intro Calls give people who want to know more about RESULTS and anti-poverty advocacy the opportunity to meet us. Thank you to all of you who have urged your friends and family to register for one of these calls. The calls generally last 30–45 minutes and include a brief overview of RESULTS and how you can get involved. If you know someone (including yourself) who would be a great advocate for the end of poverty, invite them to register a RESULTS Intro Call. The next call is tomorrow, May 8 at 9:00 pm ET. People can register for this or another upcoming Intro Call at www.tinyurl.com/RESULTSMeetandGreet/.
The GiveBIG Day of Giving is back! Want to make the most of your donation to RESULTS’ work? May 15 from midnight to midnight Pacific Time, donations to RESULTS Educational Fund (REF) are stretched on “giveBIG” Day hosted by The Seattle Foundation. Your gift will be multiplied by a pro-rated portion of matching funds from various foundations and corporate sponsors, such as Microsoft and Starbucks. This is a great way to leverage your donations to REF for a bigger impact. And it’s easy! Just visit our official giveBIG page on May 15 and click "donate now!" You could even win a “Golden Ticket” to receive an additional $1,000 donated to REF, a round-trip airline ticket given in your name to REF, and a $100 Starbucks gift card for you! Watch for our social media posts about it and forward it to your networks. Don’t let this opportunity pass you up — giveBIG on May 15!
Welcome Jennifer DeFranco! RESULTS would like to welcome Jennifer DeFranco, our newest fundraising event coach. Jennifer has experience as an organizer for a wide variety of charity fundraising events. Based in the Chicago area, Jennifer will work 1/4 time to help you with your fundraising needs. We look forward to tapping into her creativity and enthusiasm to bring our events to new heights! She can be reached at [email protected], (773) 688-8707.
We are thrilled to announce that we have a new addition to the RESULTS family! Yesterday, RESULTS Director of U.S. Poverty Campaigns Meredith Dodson and her husband Chris Green welcomed a beautiful baby daughter into the world. Baby Dodson-Green, who has not been named yet, was born at 8 lbs., 4 oz. and joins her older brother Sean as the newest member of the family. Both mother and baby are doing great. We wish Meredith and her family the fondest of congratulations and the happiest and healthiest of times ahead.
Meredith will be on maternity leave until Labor Day. During this time, RESULTS Senior Associate Jos Linn will be Acting Director of U.S. Poverty Campaigns. All inquiries on RESULTS U.S. Poverty work, unless otherwise stated, should be directed to him at [email protected] (515) 288-3622. We look forward to Meredith’s return later this summer.
Senate Letter Urges Congress to Invest in Early Learning. A few weeks ago, we mentioned that Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) was circulating a “Dear Colleague” letter to the leaders of the Senate Labor, Health, Human Services, and Education Appropriations Subcommittee urging them to fund Head Start, Early Head Start, and child care programs at the highest possible levels in FY 2014. The letter was submitted last week and garnered 28 signatures of support. Hopefully Congress will listen. Head Start and child care centers are facing a challenging year, with sequestration forcing Head Start classrooms to close early for the summer or permanently. This not only deprives at-risk children of critical early learning services as well as staff of their jobs, it forces parents to stop working to stay home with their children, find alternative, more expensive child care, or choose which child goes to preschool. Parents who are already taking on so many responsibilities should not have to carry this additional burden. If airline travelers deserved a break from sequestration, why not low-income children and families? Send a letter to the editor urging Congress to stop sacrificing low-income Americans in relentless budget battles. Use our online LTE action to send your letter today. You can keep up to date on what’s happening with Head Start and child care on our Recent Developments in Early Childhood Development Policies page.
Attend the Texas Regional Conference. RESULTS Texas groups will be holding a regional conference this Saturday, May 11 from 9:30 am – 5:00 pm CT. It is being held at the Coronada Hills Club House, 1801 Coronada Hills in Austin, TX. To RSVP or to get more details, please contact Kathleen Duncan at [email protected].
Join the Media Training Call on May 21. RESULTS volunteer leaders will be hosting their next media training call on May 21 at 8:00 pm ET. Plan to join us for an excellent discussion, tips, and stimulating ideas for getting editorial writers to listen to you, finding the right person for an op-ed, or letting us know your latest success. We welcome all who want to improve their media skills. To participate in the call, dial (218) 862-1300, passcode 682494#.
(See a complete calendar on the RESULTS website)
Upcoming Congressional Recesses: House and Senate: May 27–31. Request face-to-face meetings.
Tuesday, May 7: RESULTS Memphis (TN) outreach meeting (tentative). For more details, contact Myrdin Thompson at (502) 295-1315, [email protected].
Wednesday, May 8: RESULTS Introductory Call, 9:00 pm ET. Register for this or another Intro Call at www.tinyurl.com/RESULTSMeetandGreet/.
Thursday, May 9: RESULTS Boston outreach meeting, 6:30–8:30 pm ET, Weymouth Public Library, Tufts Branch, 46 Broad St, Weymouth, MA. Facebook Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/507478945980252. Contact Jenny Martin at [email protected] for more information.
Saturday, May 11: RESULTS U.S. Poverty National Conference Call, 12:30 pm ET. Listen to previous conference calls online.
Monday, May 27: Memorial Day. All RESULTS offices closed.
Thursday, June 6: RESULTS Orange County (CA) outreach meeting (tentative). For more details, contact Jos Linn at (515) 288-3622, [email protected].
Main Office: (p) (202) 783-7100, (f) (202) 466-1397, 1730 Rhode Island Ave, NW, Suite 400, Washington, DC 20036. If mailing a donation to our DC office, please address the envelope to the attention of Cynthia Stancil.
RESULTS U.S. Poverty Legislative and Grassroots Support Staff:
The RESULTS U.S. Poverty Update is sent out every Tuesday via e-mail to RESULTS volunteers and allies all over the country. The purpose of these updates is to inform and activate RESULTS activists to take action on our U.S. poverty campaigns.