October 28, 2016

Faith-Based White House Advisors See Opportunity to End U.S. Hunger and Poverty

Washington, D.C. – It is possible to end hunger and extreme poverty in the United States by 2030, concludes a new report by the White House Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. The group has been offering suggestions to the White House on how to address poverty during President Obama’s final year in office, and is expected to meet with the transition team of the next president.

“We need to elect a president and members of Congress who will work together to increase opportunity and reduce poverty,” said Rev. David Beckmann, president of Bread for the World and a member of the advisory council. “Nations around the world are aiming to end hunger and extreme poverty by 2030, and the United States can do that too.”

The world as a whole has made unprecedented progress against hunger, poverty, and disease over the last several decades, and the nations of the world last year adopted global goals (the Sustainable Development Goals) focused on ending extreme poverty and hunger by 2030. These goals apply to all nations, including the U.S.

In the U. S., anti-poverty programs like tax credits for low-income workers and SNAP (also known as food stamps) cut the poverty rate in half. The Obama administration has had success with initiatives such as Promise Zones, first lady Michelle Obama’s campaign to reduce child obesity, and a program that has drastically reduced veteran homelessness. Expanded health insurance coverage has helped many struggling families.

“Economic recovery and public policy together are now finally raising wages and reducing poverty,” Beckmann said. “Three-and-a-half million Americans escaped from poverty in 2015.”

Beckmann added: “Yet census data show that the number of Americans struggling with hunger is still greater than the population of California. I’m praying that our next president and Congress will put us track toward ending hunger, and clear goals would help.”  

from our Resource Library

For Education

  • The Nourishing Effect

    Hunger and food insecurity add at least $160 billion a year to U.S. healthcare costs.

  • Mass Incarceration: A Major Cause of Hunger

    Mass incarceration has far-reaching effects in the United States. It poses a significant barrier to ending U.S. hunger and poverty by 2030—a goal the United States adopted in 2015. But the connection is not always obvious.

  • Advancing Nutrition through Food Aid Reform

    The United States has long been a global leader in responding to humanitarian emergencies. Food assistance that includes nutritious food for pregnant women and young children is both a life-and-death matter for individuals and an economic imperative for countries.

For Faith

  • Unity Declaration on Racism and Poverty

    A diverse body of Christian leaders calls on the churches and Congress to focus on the integral connection.

    Dear Members of Congress,

    As the president and Congress are preparing their plans for this year, almost 100 church leaders—from all the families of U.S. Christianity—are...

  • In Times Like These … A Pan-African Christian Devotional for Public Policy Engagement

    This devotional guide invites deepened relationship with and among Pan-Af­rican people and elected leaders in the mission to end hunger and poverty.

  • Sermon by David Beckmann at Duke University Chapel

    Remarks delivered October 1, 2017 at Duke University Chapel in Chapel Hill in North Carolina.

    Thank you for inviting me to preach here at Duke University Chapel. And I especially want to thank the Bread for the World members who have come this morning.

    Bruce Puckett urged...

For Advocacy

  • Grassroots Advocacy Toolkit

    A set of how-to sheets for carrying out advocacy and fact sheets on the current issues Bread for the World is working on.

    For new and current Bread grassroots hunger activists.

    Ideal as a starter toolkit for new Bread activists or as a set of updates for current activists.


  • Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act of 2017

    Unnecessarily long prison sentences, combined with the lack of rehabilitative programs for people in prison, exacerbate hunger, poverty, and existing inequalities.

    Overly harsh mandatory minimum prison sentences have contributed to the rapid increase of our country’s prison population. The...

  • Health Care Is a Hunger Issue

    Learn more about the principles that Bread for the World supports regarding health reform.