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Letter: America must not eliminate funding for national service

America must not eliminate funding for national service

Continued investment in national service is an investment toward our future. AmeriCorps deploys more than 80,000 volunteers in the United States every year. Since 1994, 5,700 Erie County residents have served more than 8 million hours through AmeriCorps. Locally, national service plays a critical role in volunteerism, building the capacity in nonprofits, workforce development and education.

National service is a cost-effective approach that addresses various challenges and provides essential services to our communities. It instills civic value while developing critical skills necessary for today’s workforce. National service provides education awards to students to assist with the high cost of education and creates an opportunity to learn desired skill sets for the unemployed and underemployed.

The proposed presidential budget calls for the elimination of national service funding. This is a significant shift from decades of strong bipartisan presidential support. Voters from across the political spectrum overwhelmingly support investing federal taxpayer dollars to support national service programs. The elimination of national service funding would be devastating to the nonprofit and faith-based communities across the country, including our own community.

Adam M. Bartoszek

Buffalo

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