A vision for US global leadership in 2021

Join

Join the fight against extreme poverty

The COVID-19 pandemic is the starkest example of how a global health crisis can have catastrophic and far-reaching consequences – in 25 weeks, efforts to eliminate extreme poverty and preventable disease were set back nearly 25 years. Over 150 million people are expected to slip into extreme poverty in 2021, marking the first global increase in extreme poverty in two decades.

As the Biden administration faces these remarkable global challenges, global development experts remain optimistic that a renewed American commitment to global leadership and effective COVID-19 vaccines can make measurable and impactful progress in combating extreme poverty and preventable disease.

Early victories

In his inaugural address, President Biden said: “We can make America once again the leading force for good in the world.” Upon taking office, President Biden made good on that promise by taking three swift significant actions that will support a global response to COVID-19. On his first two days as president, he reversed two Trump administration actions that set back progress on the fight against COVID-19, signing an executive order to rejoin the World Health Organization; and, formally announcing that the United States will join COVAX, the global organization that aims to increase global access to vaccines.

The Biden administration also proposed $11 billion for the global humanitarian response to COVID-19, which would fund critical aid programs that have long enjoyed bipartisan support on Capitol Hill and should be supported once again. These important steps send a hopeful signal that the new administration plans to treat this global pandemic like the crisis that it is.

In addition to these significant actions, global development advocates have identified three key steps that the Biden administration and Congress should take in the short term to help combat extreme poverty and preventable disease in the coming year:

3 ways the Biden administration can immediately combat extreme poverty and preventable disease

1. Demonstrate renewed American global leadership and address the health crisis of COVID-19. The US must lead the global pandemic response and Congress should invest at least $20 billion in fighting COVID-19 globally, including funding for proven health programs like the Global Fund and CEPI.

2. Stabilize the entire global economy and prevent further economic collapse in the world’s poorest countries. Last November, Zambia became the first country to default on its debt amid the coronavirus. No country should be faced with the impossible choice of saving lives and its economy or making debt repayments during this pandemic. The US should provide immediate debt relief to the world’s poorest countries so governments can prioritize getting this pandemic under control.

3. Double annual foreign economic, health, and humanitarian assistance by 2025. President Biden has stated his desire to reassert American global leadership, rebuild diplomacy, re-engage with our global partners, fight climate change, and build back better from this pandemic. A big, bold presidential budget is necessary to effectively address our global challenges and to demonstrate the United States’ commitment to global leadership.

In his inaugural address, President Biden said: “We will lead not merely by the example of our power, but by the power of our example.” By pursuing a bold and transformative development agenda, the Biden administration can set a clear example: America is back.

Photo credit: Diego Cambiaso

Join the fight against extreme poverty

By signing you agree to ONE’s privacy policy, including to the transfer of your information to ONE’s servers in the United States.

Do you want to stay informed about how you can help fight against extreme poverty?

Sign up to receive emails from ONE and join millions of people around the world taking action to end extreme poverty and preventable disease. We’ll only ever ask for your voice, not your money. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Privacy options
Are you sure? If you select 'Yes' we can let you know how you can make a difference. You can unsubscribe at any time.

By signing you agree to ONE's privacy policy, including to the transfer of your information to ONE.org's servers in the United States.

You agree to receive occasional updates about ONE’s campaigns. You can unsubscribe at any time.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply

Related Articles