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Re: [ujeni] Fw: [NPCAAdvocacy] NPCA Advocacy Newsletter - March 2004

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  • Christine Chumbler
    The full text of the testimony and a webcast video is available online at http://wwwc.house.gov/international_relations/fullhear.htm Scroll down to March 24
    Message 1 of 2 , Mar 30, 2004
      The full text of the testimony and a webcast video is available online at http://wwwc.house.gov/international_relations/fullhear.htm

      Scroll down to March 24 and click on each speaker for their remarks.

      >>> wiserd@... 3/26/04 11:44 AM >>>
      More on the Congressional safety hearings and the PC budget:

      -----Forwarded Message-----
      From: Jonathan Pearson <jonathan@...>
      Sent: Mar 25, 2004 12:05 PM
      To: npcaadvocacy@...
      Subject: [NPCAAdvocacy] NPCA Advocacy Newsletter - March 2004


      For more information on NPCA Advocacy, visit the Advocacy Network webpage at http://www.NPCA-Advocacy.net

      March 2004

      Advocacy Newsletter

      1. Peace Corps Safety and Security Hearing on Capitol Hill

      2. Peace Corps Budget Update

      3. Michigan is First Stop for Global Leadership/Global Warming Trainings

      4. Featured NPCA Advocate: Sara Savary, Fresno, CA

      5. Action Opportunity: Tell Senate Appropriators to Support Full
      Funding for the Peace Corps!

      Jonathan Pearson - Advocacy Coordinator (mailto:advocacy@...)

      We hope to see you at our August 5 - 8 National Conference in Chicago!
      Register today at http://www.rpcv2004.org

      1) Peace Corps Safety and Security Hearing on Capitol Hill

      The House International Relations Committee held a two hour hearing
      concerning Safety and Security Issues for Peace Corps Volunteers on
      Wednesday, March 24th.

      NPCA President Kevin Quigley testified before the committee, as did
      Peace Corps Director Gaddi Vasquez, Jeffrey Bruce (Editor, Dayton Daily
      News), Walter S. Poirier (Father of missing Bolivia Peace Corps
      Volunteer Walter Poirier Jr.), Charles D. Smith (Peace Corps Inspector
      General) and Jess Ford (Director, International Affairs and Trade,
      General Accounting Office).

      Committee Chairman Henry Hyde (R-IL) opened the hearing by stating
      committee members "come here as supporters of the Peace Corps; admirers
      of their sacrifice and of the important work they do."

      Hyde noted that the committee will next week consider additional
      legislation, the "Peace Corps Safety and Security Act of 2004". The
      proposed legislation is expected to propose the creation of a more
      independent Inspector General, establish the position of "Ombudsman" of
      the Peace Corps, and statutorily create the Office of Safety and

      In his prepared remarks, Kevin Quigley shared his experience as a Peace
      Corps Volunteer in Thailand from 1976 - 79. While noting that "no two of
      the 171,000 Americans who have served as Peace Corps volunteers have an
      identical experience", Kevin added that "there are many common threads
      linking these experiences across the generations of volunteers
      regardless of the country or region of service, or the nature of the
      assignment." He praised the training he received, and added that
      because he was included in and identified as part of the community where
      he served, he never felt threatened or in danger.

      Kevin added that within the community of returned volunteers, the one
      common theme through all discussions is that Peace Corps service is a
      defining experience that continues to shape our lives. Acknowledging
      the broad spectrum of opinion within the community of returned
      volunteers, Kevin noted that "safety and security of volunteers must be
      a paramount concern."

      Congressman Chris Bell (D-TX) noted the challenge before Congress by
      asking "how much can we increase security without compromising Peace
      Corps' work and the agency's mission?"

      This challenge was echoed by Congressman Sam Farr (D-CA) a Returned
      Peace Corps Volunteer (Colombia 64 - 66). While not a member of the
      International Relations Committee, Farr attended and addressed the
      hearing at its close, urging members not to overreact, and preserve that
      initial Peace Corps spirit that has served the nation so well. "I am
      here today to urge the Committee not to change the agency so that it
      becomes Fortress America for Peace Corps Volunteers", said Farr.

      Along with Chairman Hyde and Congressman Bell other members of the House
      International Relations Committee in attendance for all or part of the
      hearing on Peace Corps safety and security were Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA),
      Ed Royce (R-CA), Amo Houghton (R-NY), Jerry Weller (R-IL), Tom Lantos
      (D-CA), Grace Flores Napolitano (D-CA) and Betty McCollum (DFL-MN)

      To read Kevin Quigley's full testimony, visit the NPCA website at

      2) Peace Corps Budget Update

      Congress is in the process of reviewing President Bush's budget request
      for Fiscal Year 2005, which will begin October 1, 2004. The President
      has requested $401 million for the Peace Corps. Peace Corps funding is
      part of a $35.1 billion dollar foreign affairs budget submitted by the

      The full Senate has approved a budget resolution which slightly
      increases the foreign affairs request (increased to $35.4 billion). The
      next stop is the Senate Appropriations Committee, which is charged with
      assigning specific dollar figures to specific line items.

      Despite good news from the Senate so far, full funding of the
      President's Peace Corps request remains very far from certain. The end
      of the newsletter provides a link to our new action alert urging members
      of the Senate Appropriations Committee to support full funding for the
      Peace Corps budget.

      3) Michigan is First Stop for Global Leadership/Global Warming Trainings

      RPCVs in Michigan, mark your calendars and make plans to attend a
      day-long advocacy training on the importance of responsible US global
      leadership, with a focus on the need to combat the growing threat of
      global warming and promote clean, renewable sources of energy. A
      Michigan training will be held on SATURDAY, JUNE 12, 2004. The training
      location is still being finalized.

      If you are interested in attending the Michigan training, please contact
      us at mailto:advocacy@.... If you live elsewhere and are
      interested in advocating on the issues of global warming and clean
      energy, contact us as well.

      Be looking on the Advocacy section of the NPCA website and upcoming
      newsletters for more details on the June 12th Michigan training and
      other upcoming training announcements.

      This program is supported by a generous grant from the Rockefeller
      Brothers Fund. Special thanks to Jeff Jenks and members of the
      Southeastern Michigan Returned Volunteers for hosting our upcoming

      4) Featured NPCA Advocate: Sara Savary

      As we continue to build our NPCA Advocacy Network, we will be seeking
      out RPCVs who are willing to take on the responsibility of serving as
      Advocacy Coordinators. Coordinators will help energize, organize and
      mobilize other NPCA members and friends in their state (or region) to be
      effective advocates for matters of global concern.

      We are proud to introduce one RPCV ready to step up to the challenge.
      Sara Savary (Togo 82-84) has agreed to take on the role of Central
      California Advocacy Coordinator. A resident of Fresno, Sara works
      professionally as an agriculture consultant and has participated in
      advocacy initiatives at the state and local level through several
      professional organizations. Sara is concerned about development
      issues, and feels it is especially important to be a voice in rural
      portions of her state on behalf of the importance and benefits of US
      policies which support effective international development programs.

      Sara will help coordinate NPCA advocacy promotion and outreach in and
      around Fresno. Thank you Sara and welcome!

      5. Action Opportunity: Tell Senate Appropriators to Support Full
      Funding for the Peace Corps!

      While various congressional committees hold important votes to set
      budget targets and authorize funding levels for various federal
      programs, the House and Senate Appropriations Committees get down to the
      business of looking at specific programs (such as Peace Corps) and
      approving line-item dollar figures for the next fiscal year budget.
      Follow this website link and tell members of the Senate Appropriations
      Committee to support full funding for the Peace Corps. Sample letters
      are provided. Ask your family members, friends and colleagues to take
      action as well! Go to http://www.rpcv.org/pages/sitepage.cfm?id=769

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