Senator Coons’ legislation to address global malnutrition passes Senate, heads to President Biden

WASHINGTON — U.S. Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) celebrated the passing of his bipartisan bill to strengthen federal efforts and improve coordination to tackle global malnutrition. The Global Malnutrition Prevention and Treatment Act, which will authorize the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) to expand programs and activities to prevent and treat malnutrition worldwide, passed the Senate by vote last night. Having previously passed the House with a strong bipartisan vote, the bill now goes to President Biden for his signature. Alongside Sen. Coons, who serves on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and chairs the Senate Subcommittee on Government Appropriations for Governmental Foreign Operations and Related Programs (SFOPS), are U.S. Senators Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), Tim Kaine (D-Va.) and John Boozman (R-Ark.) also led the bill. The bill was led in the House of Representatives by Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Gregory Meeks (DN.Y.) and senior member Mike McCaul (R-Texas).

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“The Senate passage of the Global Malnutrition Prevention and Treatment Act demonstrates our bipartisan commitment to address the malnutrition that causes suffering in millions of children around the world,” said Senator Coons. “As the world recovers from COVID-19 and deals with escalating military conflicts, this law will help the US lead by example to improve the health of children, mothers and families around the world. I am pleased that the Senate unanimously passed this legislation and I look forward to President Biden signing this legislation swiftly.”

“Malnutrition affects millions around the world and takes a heavy toll on children and expectant mothers,” Said Senator Wicker. “The targeted reforms contained in the Global Malnutrition Prevention and Treatment Act will enhance our ability to meet this growing challenge and save lives.”

“The pandemic and Russia’s war on Ukraine have exacerbated global food insecurity, and United States leadership is critical to reducing world hunger.” said Senator Kaine. “The Senate’s unanimous passage of our bipartisan Global Malnutrition Prevention and Treatment Act will help keep starvation at bay for vulnerable children and families around the world. I urge President Biden to sign this law into law as soon as possible.”

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“The passage of this legislation is an important and necessary step in tackling global malnutrition and improving coordination with our partners around the world,” senator said Boozman. “I urge the President to sign this law into law quickly so we can help the children and families who need it most.”

The Global Malnutrition Prevention and Treatment Act:

  • Authorizes the USAID Administrator to expand the prevention and treatment of global malnutrition and coordinate with relevant public and private partners in these efforts;
  • Directs the USAID Administrator to select priority countries that would receive priority food assistance;
  • Establishes the Nutrition Leadership Council to coordinate USAID’s efforts to prevent and treat malnutrition with representatives from relevant interagency and interagency offices;
  • Directs USAID to develop and present an implementation plan to prevent and treat global malnutrition; and
  • Requests USAID to submit an annual report to Congress on progress made in preventing and treating malnutrition worldwide.

The bill is supported by 1,000 Days, Action Against Hunger, Alliance to End Hunger, Bread for the World, CARE, Farm Journal Foundation, Food for the Hungry, Global Health Council, HarvestPlus, Hellen Keller International, InterAction, ONE Campaign, RESULTS, Save the Children, UNICEF USA and World Vision USA.

The full text of the law is available here.

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