Member of Congress Promotes AmeriCorps AND Wants to Eliminate It
Posted by Zach Maurin on February 3, 2012
ServiceNation, the organization that ServeNext recently merged with, put out a statement today about this. Hat tip to AmeriCorps Alums for noticing the contradiction.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
February 3, 2012
Christopher Cashman, 212-804-6370
STATEMENT ON CONGRESSMAN MARLIN STUTZMAN BILL TO DEFUND NATIONAL SERVICE PROGRAM TOUTED ON HIS OWN WEBSITE
Stutzman Highlights Benefits of AmeriCorps Program While Simultaneously Working to Eliminate its Funding
Zach Maurin with ServiceNation, a national, bipartisan campaign dedicated to increasing opportunities for Americans to serve their country and elevating service as a core problem-solving strategy, released the following statement calling on Congressman Marlin Stutzman to clarify his stance on the benefits of national service:
“Congressman Marlin Stutzman recently introduced legislation eliminating the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), the organization that funds national service programs such as AmeriCorps. His proposed legislation would result in the complete end of AmeriCorps, causing 80,000 young adults to be without jobs, nearly 1 million seniors living independently to require state-assistance, and more than 3 million at-risk children to lose vital educational support.
“What is most striking though is that Congressman Stutzman himself has touted the many benefits that programs like AmeriCorps have brought to Indiana communities. On the Congressman’s official website, he advocates AmeriCorps and the AmeriCorps Education Award as a way for people interested in public service to get help paying for college – programs that he now advocates defunding. Additionally, more than 870 of
the Congressman’s constituents serve as Senior Corps members with great local organizations like Catholic Charities of Fort Wayne-South Bend, providing critical services such as helping seniors remain living independently, saving taxpayers the expense of costly nursing homes.
“While we are glad that Congressman Stutzman appears to recognize the vital role that national service programs play in America, we are confused as to why he would now advocate for eliminating its funding completely. Congressman Stutzman needs to look no further than his own website to see the vital economic and community health benefits that would be lost without funding for national service. We hope he withdraws his bill and look forward to working with him to fully understand the value national service plays in American society.”
Facts About National Service:
- AmeriCorps received 530,000 applicants for 80,000 positions last year.
- Every federal dollar invested in national service yields $2.01 worth of essential services.
- The 2006 estimated market value of the services CNCS grantees provide topped $2 billion annually.
- Without federal support for national service organizations:
- 3 million children would be denied vital educational support
- 620,000 seniors wouldn’t receive life sustaining, in-home services
- Thousands of veterans would be denied meaningful work opportunities and Veterans Association-supported services.
- More than 745,000 medically underserved children and adults will not receive health outreach, education and immunizations from Community HealthCorps members,
- More than 1.5 million students will no longer be engaged in active learning and civic engagement opportunities,
- Thousands of healthy meals will not be delivered to the elderly every day.
ServiceNation is a national campaign to increase service opportunities and elevate service as a core ideal and problem solving strategy in America. Reaching an estimated 100 million citizen through its 285 coalition members, ServiceNation played a leading role in drafting and enacting the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act, which authorized the greatest expansion of national service in a generation. The ServiceNation coalition is working to inspire a powerful culture of volunteerism in our country and envisions an America in which a commonly asked questions is ‘Where do you serve?’ For more information, visit www.servicenation.org.