Action Alert from Coalition of Life Sciences

Posted: January 23, 2013 in Funding, Policy, Science Outreach

“The Coalition for the Life Sciences is an alliance of six non-profit professional organizations working together to foster public policies that advance basic biological research and its applications in medicine and other fields. The issues addressed by the CLS include science education, professional training, and the funding, management, and oversight of scientific work, especially by the federal government.”

From the Coalition of Life Sciences Advocacy and Public Policy website

We have an urgent message requiring your immediate action to prevent deep cuts in research funding that are scheduled to take place in less than six weeks. This is an emergency, so drop whatever you are doing and take 10 minutes to help our community. Here is the background:The Fiscal Cliff: What Happened and What is Next

For months, the Coalition for the Life Sciences has urged you to lend your voice to the debate on “sequestration”, popularly known as the fiscal cliff. Sequestration threatened to cut 8.2% of the 2013 appropriations for most federal agencies including the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the National Science Foundation (NSF). The 8.2% cut in the middle of the fiscal year would have had an immediate impact on the scientific enterprise. Many grant applications would not be funded, labs would shut within a month, and many scientists would lose their jobs. When we asked, you spoke up. Congress heard from every voice in the community – from the grad student to the Nobel Laureate.

Let me assure you your voices were heard. President Obama singled out research, and only research, as a program that we can’t keep cutting. He said, “We can’t keep cutting things like basic research and new technology and still expect to succeed in a 21st century economy. So we’re going to have to continue to move forward in deficit reduction, but we have to do it in a balanced way, making sure that we are growing even as we get a handle on our spending.”

Unfortunately, the deal to avert the fiscal cliff only delayed deep spending cuts from going into effect from January 1 until March 1. Already, many members of Congress favoring deep spending cuts are calling for a government shutdown as a strategy to ensure their cuts are passed.

Again, we must ask our advocates to step up and be heard.Primarily we need scientists, their relatives and their friends who live in the districts or states represented by members of the Appropriations Committees (listed below) to call their offices with a simple message:

  • I am concerned about the health of my family and friends. Progress depends on medical research, so there must be no further cuts to funding for NIH and NSF. We must preserve and protect our national bi-partisan commitment to biomedical research.

This is all hands on deck! It is not enough for our community alone to contact congress. You must ask your friends, family, and business associates located in these key districts and states to call-in as well. Our website explains how to contact your member of Congress.

Need ideas on what you can do? Here are a few:

  • Circulate a petition to lab suppliers you work with as well as the local Starbucks that benefits from your long hours in the lab and then mail it to your member of Congress.
  • Grab several of your colleagues and visit the local office of your member of Congress.
  • Write an op-ed or letter to the editor for your statewide and local newspapers.  We have resources and sample letters to the editor on the CLS websitehttp://www.coalitionforlifesciences.org/be-an-advocate/ad….

If you need help, just drop the CLS an email. We will provide talking points or assistance.

Appropriations Full Committee Members

Republicans:

  • Harold Rogers, Kentucky, Chairman
  • C.W. Bill Young, Florida
  • Frank R. Wolf, Virginia
  • Jack Kingston, Georgia
  • Rodney P. Frelinghuysen, New Jersey
  • Tom Latham, Iowa
  • Robert B. Aderholt, Alabama
  • Jo Ann Emerson, Missouri
  • Kay Granger, Texas
  • Michael K. Simpson, Idaho
  • John Abney Culberson, Texas
  • Ander Crenshaw, Florida
  • John R. Carter, Texas
  • Rodney Alexander, Louisiana
  • Ken Calvert, California
  • Jo Bonner, Alabama
  • Tom Cole, Oklahoma
  • Mario Diaz-Balart, Florida
  • Charles W. Dent, Pennsylvania
  • Tom Graves, Georgia
  • Kevin Yoder, Kansas
  • Steve Womack, Arkansas
  • Alan Nunnelee, Mississippi
  • Jeff Fortenberry, Nebraska
  • Tom Rooney, Florida
  • Chuck Fleischmann, Tennessee
  • Jaime Herrera Beutler, Washington
  • David Joyce, Ohio
  • David Valadao, California

Democrats:

  • Nita M. Lowey, New York
  • Marcy Kaptur, Ohio
  • Peter J. Visclosky, Indiana
  • José E. Serrano, New York
  • Rosa L. DeLauro, Connecticut
  • James P. Moran, Virginia
  • Ed Pastor, Arizona
  • David E. Price, North Carolina
  • Lucille Roybal-Allard, California
  • Sam Farr, California
  • Chaka Fattah, Pennsylvania
  • Sanford D. Bishop, Jr., Georgia
  • Barbara Lee, California
  • Adam B. Schiff, California
  • Michael M. Honda, California
  • Betty McCollum, Minnesota
  • Tim Ryan, Ohio
  • Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Florida
  • Henry Cuellar, Texas
  • Chellie Pingree, Maine
  • Mike Quigley, Illinois
  • Bill Owens, New York
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