Washington, D.C. – Bread for the World celebrates the introduction and passage of the Global Malnutrition Prevention and Treatment Act (H.R. 4693) by the House Foreign Affairs Committee. This bipartisan legislation, introduced by House Foreign Affairs Committee Ranking Member Michael McCaul (R-TX), Chairman Gregory W. Meeks (D-NY), and Reps. Young Kim (R-CA) and Chrissy Houlahan (D-PA), has the potential to impact the lives of tens of millions of women and children around the world.
Globally, malnutrition remains among the top risk factors contributing to nearly half of all preventable deaths among children under age five. And without strategic investments and interventions, the devastating impacts of COVID-19 could wind back decades of progress in alleviating maternal and child nutrition. According to recent data, nearly 14 million more children will likely be severely malnourished by next year. Targeted interventions that, among other goals, protect the nutrition of women and children during the critical 1000-day period between a woman’s pregnancy and her child’s second birthday, are essential for ensuring the development of children’s physical and mental health.
At this critical juncture in the history of our nation and world, H.R. 4693 authorizes the U.S. Agency of International Development to develop a comprehensive, evidence-based nutrition strategy to end malnutrition, leveraging coordinated expertise across key U.S. federal agencies, including the Department of Agriculture, Department of Health and Human Services, and State Department, among others.
“Due to the persistent advocacy of Bread members and strategic partner coordination, Congress passed a resolution last December that garnered bipartisan support to pave the way for today’s victory. The Committee’s passage of H.R. 4693 is a major step toward advancing legislation that will improve global nutrition for millions,” said Rev. Eugene Cho, president and CEO of Bread for the World. “Courageous U.S. congressional leadership as displayed by the Committee’s passage of H.R. 4693 is crucial to further nutrition progress, will derail the impacts of COVID-19, and fulfill God’s call and our commitment to end hunger in our lifetime.”