Urging Princetonians to Support Global Child Thrive Act Amendment
To the Editor,
A lot of Princetonians who worked hard on the election, and even some who didn’t, are saying, “I voted, now what?” We know our democracy is more fragile than we thought and that voting every two years is not enough. Here’s a way to stay in the game and make a difference.
Representative Bonnie Watson Coleman has cosponsored the Global Child Thrive Act, HR 4864, which would require the administration to integrate early childhood development techniques into all child-focused international aid programs, techniques like reading and singing to children, playing with colorful objects, and providing better nutrition. The kinds of things that we would do with our own children and grandchildren can make a world of difference for children around the globe.
I know what you might be thinking, “But Congress can’t get anything done.” Not true. The Global Child Thrive Act has been included as an amendment to the House version of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), a must-pass bill that now goes to a House/Senate conference to iron out differences between the two pieces of legislation.
Here’s where we come in. Senators Menedez and Booker are not among the 27 Senate cosponsors of the Global Child Thrive Act, but they can still make a big difference — with your help. Call their offices and urge them to ask Sen. Jack Reed, the top Democrat on the Senate Armed Services Committee, to include the House’s Global Child Thrive Act Amendment in the final version of the NDAA that will come out of the House/Senate Conference Committee.
Princeton residents care about the well-being of children in our own community and around the world. Children living in refugee camps and facing poverty face terrible harm, but early childhood development can address some of the worst effects. Urge Senators Menendez and Booker to ask Sen. Jack Reed to include the House’s Global Child Thrive Act Amendment in the final version of the NDAA that will come out of the House/Senate Conference Committee.
A lot of us are saying, “I’ve voted, now what?” One answer is to rejuvenate our democracy.
The writer founded the anti-poverty lobby RESULTS, the Microcredit Summit Campaign, and Civic Courage and is author of Reclaiming Our Democracy.