Thank you for helping us garner more public support to address the neglected global burns crisis! Feel free to use the sample text below as a starting point for your letter* or email to your member of Congress.
Click here to find your member of Congress by entering your zip code. There you will be able to find the address of the member's Washington, D.C. office or the member's email address.
Note: Reps. Betty McCollum, Barbara Lee and Anna Eshoo have already committed to submitting the language we have requested below. If this is your member of Congress, please instead consider writing a letter of thanks for their support.
Subject: Support inclusion of language on burn prevention and treatment in the FY2015 Appropriations Committee Report for State and Foreign Operations
Dear Representative [insert name]:
I believe that every woman and child deserves the kind of quality treatment - even for minor injuries - that we enjoy in this country. Yet in developing countries, even relatively minor burns result in millions of needless deaths or disabilities. Ninety-five percent of the nearly 11 million annual burn injuries around the world occur in developing countries, where open fires for cooking are prevalent, prevention is almost nonexistent and medical care for burns is extremely limited.
For developing world women ages 15-49 in South Asia, where the burns crisis is most severe, burns are the 3rd leading cause of death - the 11th for women of this age in all developing countries - according to the 2010 Global Burden of Disease Study. For children under 5 in these countries, burn injuries are the 15th leading cause of death and the 16th leading cause of disabilities. Burns also represent a human rights issue in many countries, as fire and acid attacks are used to brutally disfigure women and girls. This is unacceptable, and I hope I can count on you to help rectify this injustice.
Today, I am writing as your constituent to ask you to please join ReSurge International, InterAction and several Hill champions in supporting the inclusion of the following language in the FY2015 Appropriations Committee Report for State and Foreign Operations, Global Health:
"The Committee encourages USAID to consider integrating burn prevention programs and support the modest treatment and surgical intervention to prevent and/or correct disabling injuries into existing child and maternal health prevention education programs, emergency response and health care capacity building."
Thanks to the great effort of Congress in recent years, issues like HIV/AIDS and malaria have garnered critical legislative and financial support, and progress has been made in addressing these global health issues. Other important issues, unfortunately, have fallen by the wayside. Now is the time to turn our attention to the hidden global crisis of burns. Now is the time to take action.
Following a congressional briefing on burns last spring, the House Appropriations Committee included in its FY2014 Report for State and Foreign Operations, Maternal and Child Health, a request for USAID to look into the estimated need and cost-effectiveness of burn prevention programs. This is a promising first step, but this year I hope you will spur your colleagues to readdress burn injury prevention and treatment with even more resolve.
Representative Betty McCollum and Representative Barbara Lee have agreed to submit the above language to the subcommittee on State and Foreign Operations. I ask that you too join this effort to provide a voice for the millions of individuals who cannot access the burn care and treatment they need by voicing your support for the inclusion of this language with any legislation making appropriations for FY2015.
Thank you for your service to my district and for your support of this action on behalf of burn victims everywhere. For more information on the global crisis of burns, please visit www.resurge.org/burns.
I look forward to your response.
*Note: a hand-written letter tends to get more attention.