By Bread Staff
Bread for the World has begun its work on elevating hunger and poverty as key issues during the 2016 elections through its national “I Vote to End Hunger” campaign.
The campaign is urging voters to elect a president and Congress who will put the United States and the world on track to end hunger by 2030. Bread has also released a 2016 election platform, which is focused on steps leaders can take to end hunger.
“Bread for the World is doing more election work this year than we have ever done before,” said Rev. David Beckmann, Bread’s president. “We are convinced that it’s possible to end hunger worldwide – and certainly in the United States – by 2030. The Pope says so. The Gates Foundation says so. All the nations of the world have agreed to make it happen.”
He added: “Most importantly, it’s already happening. Many nations are already making unprecedented progress against hunger, poverty, and disease. And in our own country, the types of programs that started with the War on Poverty cut poverty in half.
But we won’t make this a nation of opportunity for all unless opportunity – and progress against hunger and poverty — become a higher priority for the U.S. government. Churches and charities can never end hunger by ourselves; we also need strong leadership from our government. So Bread for the World – and members and member churches across the country – are praying and working to help elect a president and Congress who will put our country and the world on track toward the end of hunger.”
As part of our election’s work, Bread’s grassroots activists are reaching out to voters and congressional candidates across the country, focusing on 12 swing states. The organization is also using digital ads to reach 50 million voters in these same swing states.
Bread is asking candidates: “If elected, what will you do to end hunger, alleviate poverty, and create opportunity in the U.S. and worldwide?” Bread is also working with other groups to ask the question. A recent survey conducted by Bread for the World found that 1 in 3 voters says they will vote for candidates who promise to make ending hunger one of their top priorities.
Bread’s election platform will be shared with candidates and voters, especially in our target states, asking them to endorse it in their own communications.
Beckmann said that the “platform outlines policy strategies that would allow us to end hunger by 2030. You can read it: jobs that pay, investment in people, removing the obstacles that some people face in the job market, and a strong safety net. These are not radical changes, but they would, together, make a radical difference in our country.
Today, one in five U.S. children struggles with hunger. Food insecurity damages children, especially little children. It often permanently damages the brains and personalities of little children. We do not have to put up with widespread hunger among U.S. children.”
As a Christian organization, Bread expects presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald J. Trump and all other candidates in the 2016 campaign to act respectfully toward each other, and promote policies that provide help and opportunity for people who struggle with hunger and poverty.
“The U.S. election on November 8 could not be more important,” Beckmann said. “It’s important for all of us, and it’s certainly important to the many people in our country and around the world who are struggling with hunger.”