Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Principles for a Faithful Farm Bill

Principles for a Faithful Farm Bill
From God’s initial command to care for creation to the prophets’ call for justice among governments and nations, people of faith in every age are called together to work for the common good. Inspired by our faith traditions’ commands to care for poor and vulnerable people, we join together to support policies that promote local food security in the U.S. and around the world, strengthen rural communities, and care for the land as God’s creation.
Our nation’s food and farm policies as embodied in the Farm Bill impact people and communities from rural America to developing countries. In the current budget climate, the Farm Bill’s limited resources must be effectively targeted where need is greatest. Programs and policies that curb hunger and malnutrition, support vibrant agricultural economies in rural communities, and promote the sustainable use of natural resources must be prioritized.
Together, we will urge Congress to take the opportunity presented by the reauthorization of the Farm Bill to reduce hunger and poverty in the U.S. and around the world and encourage sustainable stewardship of our resources. To this end, we support the following principles for the 2012 Farm Bill:
·         Protect and strengthen programs that reduce hunger and improve nutrition in the United States.
·         Promote investments and policies that strengthen rural communities and combat rural poverty.
·         Provide a fair and effective farmer safety net that allows farmers in the U.S. and around the world to earn economically sustainable livelihoods.
·         Strengthen policies and programs that promote conservation and protect creation from environmental degradation.
·         Protect the dignity, health, and safety, of those responsible for working the land.
·         Promote research related to alternative, clean, and renewable forms of energy that do not negatively impact food prices or the environment.
·         Safeguard and improve international food aid in ways that encourage local food security and improve the nutritional quality of food aid.
Signed by:
American Jewish World Service
Bread for the World
Catholic Relief Services
Church of the Brethren
Church World Service
Columban Center for Advocacy and Outreach
Conference of Major Superiors of Men (CMSM)
Disciples Home Missions of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility
Jewish Council for Public Affairs
Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns
Mennonite Central Committee U.S. Washington Office
National Catholic Rural Life Conference
National Council of Jewish Women
National Council of Churches Poverty Initiative
The Office of Social Justice of the Christian Reformed Church
Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) Office of Public Witness
United Church of Christ Justice and Witness Ministries
Union for Reform Judaism
U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops