CAA News Today

Jessica Jones Irons, executive director of the National Humanities Alliance (NHA), emailed the following Humanities Action Alert on April 15, 2011. Founded in 1981, NHA is a nonprofit organization that works to advance national humanities policy in the areas of research, education, preservation, and public programs.

House and Senate Dear Colleague Letters

As you know, Congress just passed a final, compromise bill on funding for the current fiscal year (FY 2011). Along with cuts to most federal agencies and accounts, there are significant reductions in spending for critical humanities programs. NEH funding was cut by approximately $12.5 million (7.5%), with a final level for FY 2011 of $154.69 million (including a .2% across-the-board rescission). Far more drastic cuts were made to two critical Department of Education accounts: Title VI/Fulbright Hays International Education Programs (cut by $50 million—about 40%), and Teaching American History grants (cut by $73 million—about 61%). We will continue to post updates to the NHA website on efforts to restore funding to these and other programs.

In the meantime, ongoing advocacy efforts for FY 2012 humanities funding continue. Last Friday we let you know about two Dear Colleague letters circulating in the House and Senate in support of the humanities. If you have not done so already, please take a few minutes to contact your Members of Congress and ask them to sign the NEH dear colleague.

The deadline for Representatives to indicate their interest in signing the House letter, sponsored by Rep. David Price (D-NC), is today (April 15). The deadline for Senators to sign the Senate letter, sponsored by Senator Tom Udall (D-NM), is April 25.

The Alliance has set up template messages for you to customize. Click here to send a message to your Representative. Click here to send a message to your Senators. If you would prefer to call the offices directly, you can do so through the Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121.

Updated lists of signers are available here.


Jessica Irons
Executive Director
National Humanities Alliance