Friday, May 4, 2012

ACTION ALERT: Write Congress now in support of funding for exchanges in FY13!

The following IHEC Blog post is simply a copy and paste job of an Action Alert from the Alliance for International Educational and Cultural Exchange.  Nearly 480 letters have been signed and submitted as of 4:00pm CST on Friday, May 4.  @AllianceExchnge is reporting via Twitter that the House Appropriations will mark up next Wednesday, May 10th so please consider taking action!  I wrote my representatives!

The House Appropriations State-Foreign Operations Subcommittee (which funds State Department exchange programs) will consider funding for FY 2013 as early as next week, with the Senate subcommittee to follow soon after. While the Senate has proposed nearly level funding for international affairs programs, the House is threatening to cut them by 9.4 per cent.

We need to generate as many letters from constituents as possible, asking your members of Congress to support level funding for Department of State exchange programs at $598.8 million in FY 13.

Please take a minute and write your Representative and Senators via this link. You can send the letter as is, or better yet, add specific examples that demonstrate the impact of exchanges in your community:

Also, please forward this action alert to your colleagues, field reps, local coordinators, host families, board members, etc.

While every letter counts, reaching out to members on the State-Foreign Operations Appropriations subcommittees is particularly important. These members are:


Chair: Kay Granger (TX)
Jerry Lewis (CA)
Frank Wolf (VA)
Tom Cole (OK)
Mario Diaz-Balart (FL)
Charles Dent (PA)
Steve Austria (OH)

Ranking Member: Nita Lowey (NY)
Jesse Jackson, Jr. (IL)
Adam Schiff (CA)
Steven Rothman (NJ)


Chair: Patrick Leahy (VT)
Daniel Inouye (HI)
Tom Harkin (IA)
Barbara Mikulski (MD)
Richard Durbin (IL)
Mary Landrieu (LA)
Frank Lautenberg (NJ)
Sherrod Brown (OH)

Ranking Member: Lindsey Graham (SC)
Mitch McConnell (KY)
Mark Kirk (IL)
Roy Blunt (MO)
Dan Coats (IN)
Ron Johnson (WI)
John Hoeven (ND)

Many thanks for taking action and raising your voice in support of international exchange!

Photo credit:  studentofrythm


  1. I wrote one of my Senators (I won’t name him out of possibly-misguided respect), and got this wonderful reply:

    “While [our] administration appreciates your concern, sacrifices, regrettable though they certainly are, must be made.”

    I find it interesting that the government employs rhetoric encouraging the future of youth education, only to cut opportunities...

    I’ve never seen a politician offer to reduce his own salary to benefit government spending, interestingly.

  2. Updates via @AllianceExchnge on Twitter:

    1210 messages sent to Congress in support of exchanges via the Alliance link!!

    Senate funds exchanges at $625mil for FY13, $38mil above President's request & $26 million above current level: