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2022 Priorities

While Peace Corps has strong bipartisan support in Congress and across American society, 2022 marks an historic moment where we need to tap into and build that support, for the volunteers who are beginning to return to assignments overseas, and for the collaborative and humanitarian mission to confront global challenges as great today as anytime in Peace Corps’ 61 years of operations.

  • To gradually return and eventually surpass Peace Corps’ presence around the workd, its budget will need to consistently grow.
  • To ensure that serving and returning Volunteers receive the healthcare they deserve, reforms will need to be enacted.
  • To recruit, incentivize, and honor future Volunteers who represent the diversity of our nation, benefits will need to be enhanced (or protected), and key legislation will need to become law.

Pass the Peace Corps Reauthorization Act

It has been more than twenty years since Congress has reauthorized the Peace Corps Act. In 2022, National Peace Corps Association’s top priority is to see Congress pass the Peace Corps Reauthorization Act, comprehensive legislation that seeks to address longstanding proposals for reforms and more recent initiatives to bring further improvements to service and its impact for the next generation of Volunteers and the communities where they serve. A number of these provisions are found in NPCA’s Peace Corps Connect to the Future report.

Funding for the Peace Corps

The Peace Corps’ budget amounts to less than 1% of the U.S. International Affairs Budget, which itself is less than 1% of all federal spending. The annual appropriation for the Peace Corps has been flat for the past six years. With Peace Corps Volunteers returning to service, and numerous improvements and reforms needed, we can’t afford a seventh consecutive year of flat funding.

Public Service Loan Forgiveness

In late 2021 the federal Department of Education announced plans to reform the beleaguered Public Service Loan Forgiveness program, which is intended to support thousands of individuals with student loan relief in return for a commitment to public service. In reviewing and revising its program, the Education Department needs to make sure that impacted Returned Peace Corps Volunteers are provided fair and equitable treatment.

Diversity in the State Department

As the Peace Corps is receiving praise for its plans to strengthen diversity, equity, and inclusion among its ranks, and as the Peace Corps community considers how to assist in these efforts, legislation in the House of Representatives calls for sustained and systemic reforms in our diplomatic ranks.

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