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'Political Will' Needed To Implement Solutions For Long-Term Food Security Challenges

“This month, President Obama’s Feed the Future initiative received a $1 billion pledge from U.S. organizations to address the root causes of hunger and poverty,” Rep. Mike Honda (D-Calif.) writes in the Huffington Post’s “Politics” blog, noting, “This pledge came on the heels of a $4 billion pledge by more than 60 companies from Africa and other continents.” He continues, “As co-chairman of the Congressional Ethiopia Caucus and the Congressional Out of Poverty Caucus, I commend these pledges and look forward to working with the administration as they are implemented.” However, he adds, “[t]hese are short-term fixes … to the long-term issues of chronic food insecurity and malnutrition facing millions.”

“Unlike many issues that require decades-long efforts, combating global hunger and malnutrition is possible and within our reach,” Honda writes, adding, “It will require action on several fronts, including food security, climate change and poverty alleviation, both at home and abroad and by both the private sector and governments around the world.” He lauds the Obama administration “for launching the Feed the Future initiative with a $3.5 billion commitment in 2009 and for continuing the conversation in Congress,” and writes, “The Republican leadership, however, and House Republicans in particular, has failed to demonstrate the leadership that is absolutely necessary for spurring the world into action.” Honda concludes, “As we recognize World Hunger Day on Oct. 16, we must advocate loudly for these solutions. … We have the resources and innovation necessary to tackle this challenge. What we need now is the political will” (10/4).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.