Today, more people have access to mobile phones than to electricity or clean water— and it’s making a difference in the fight against global poverty. In 2000, only 4 percent of people living in low- and middle-income countries had access to mobile phones. In 2015, that number rose to a whopping 94 percent. Here's how technology is demonstrating a real, measurable impact.
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Veterans for Smart Power
In today’s interconnected world, America must use all of the instruments of national security and foreign policy at its disposal. America’s civilian tools of diplomacy and development are critical, which is why the USGLC supports a strong and effective International Affairs Budget for:
- Protecting National Security by fighting terrorism, stabilizing weak and fragile states, combating weapons proliferation, and promoting global stability;
- Building Economic Prosperity by developing international markets, driving economic development, creating American jobs, and expanding exports;
- Strengthening Humanitarian Values by saving lives, alleviating global poverty and hunger, fighting HIV/AIDS and other infectious diseases, and expanding educational opportunities for women and girls.
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With over 27 million people in 165 countries enslaved around the world— the highest rate in history, according to Senator Bob Corker (R-TN)— the need to address modern-day slavery and human trafficking is more imperative now than ever before. Fortunately, “we are at a historic turning point in the global fight to end modern slavery,” said Senator Corker during the opening of last week’s hearing at the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
In a world of abundant food, how is it possible that 45 percent of childhood deaths are still linked to malnutrition? You might be surprised to learn that part of the solution, according to Bill Gates, is chickens, which last year he called the best solution to global poverty. As Gates points out, chickens present a major opportunity to increase household incomes and nutrition through greater meat and egg production. These investments not only fight malnutrition but also pay dividends for American businesses.
In The Spotlight
Economic development is a lot cheaper than sending soldiers.Robert Gates Former Secretary of Defense
The account we’re talking about can make the difference between a safe America or an at-risk America… if you don’t see it as a national security tool, then I think that we are missing the mark as a nation.Lindsey Graham United States Senator
If you don’t fund the State Department fully, then I need to buy more ammunition.General James Mattis Former Commander of United States Central Command
It would make Americans less safe and harm our economy to turn away from the world at a time when our leadership and engagement is especially necessary. We would miss opportunities for greater prosperity and stability and sow the seeds of greater indebtedness.Senator Bob Corker Ranking Member of Senate Foreign Relations Committee
The programs supported by the International Affairs Budget are as essential to our national security as defense programs. Development and diplomacy protect our nation by addressing the root causes of terrorism and conflict. But it’s not just about security. By building new markets overseas for American products, the International Affairs Budget creates jobs and boosts the economy here at home.Tom Ridge Former Secretary of Homeland Security
The investments we make today in the developing world will help create the jobs of tomorrow here in America. Right now, the tough choice is to maintain foreign assistance, not to cut it. Right now, the bold act of leadership is to defend spending on key international programs, not to attack it.Bill Gates Chairman of Microsoft
Greater engagement through diplomacy and development is not an option in today’s world: it is a necessity. Investing in American diplomacy serves the interests of our country in all corners of the globe and helps create a better, safer world.Madeleine Albright Former Secretary of State