Urge Your Members of Congress to Reject Proposed Cuts to NIH

March 17, 2017

Your action makes a difference! Thanks to your calls and letters to Members of Congress, we hardly have to explain what Usher syndrome is on the Hill - they’re hearing you, they’re getting to know you, and they know we’re not going away.

Yesterday morning, the Trump Administration released its "skinny" FY2018 budget proposal. The budget proposal would cut funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) by $5.8 billion, or about 20 percent. A cut of this size would be extremely destructive to Usher syndrome research!

Take action NOW to let your members of Congress know you're counting on them to reject these cuts and to prioritize Usher syndrome research funding.  

Find the address of your Senators' and House Representative's office that is closest to your home. Sending your letters immediately to their district offices will make a greater impact than those arriving in their Washington, DC Congressional offices. 

Here's a sample message to get you started:

Dear Representative/Senator (Name)...

As your constituent and someone who has been touched by Usher syndrome, the most common genetic cause of combined deafness and blindness, I am deeply concerned about the proposed cuts to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the Administration's budget. 

Cutting research funding would be damaging to the progress that the National Eye Institute (NEI) and the National Institute on Deafness and Communication Disorders (NIDCD) have made towards treatments for Usher syndrome. There is no cure for Usher syndrome. We urgently need more federal funding to improve treatment options and outcomes for those impacted.  

As my member of Congress, I urge you to reject the Administration's cuts to the NIH and call on Congress to continue to support predictable and sustainable increases to the NIH, NEI and NIDCD to continue progress towards viable treatments for those with Usher syndrome.

Sincerely,

(Your Name)

(Your Address)

(City, State, Zip)

(Your Email)

Click here to find your House Representative's district office.

Click her to find your Senators' district offices.

Now is the time to show how powerful our community is, and how loud your voice has become.

We need to stop the Trump Administration’s request that is at odds with the groundbreaking 21st Century Cures Act passed by Congress last year that added nearly $5 billion to NIH over a decade – recognition that cures are cheaper than care. For example, the annual costs related to eye disease is expected to reach $717 billion by 2050. That doesn’t even include the costs associated with hearing impairment. 

The good news: while the President may offer proposals, Congress ultimately creates the budget and has the power to ensure federal research funding continues and increases. But they need to hear from you

You have a powerful voice. Thank you for using it. 

If you have any questions or need assistance, please do not hesitate to contact Krista Vasi at k.vasi@usher-syndrome.org. You can also call us toll-free at 1-855-998-7437 or by Videophone (VP): 1-631-533-9621

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