Unanimous resolution calls national service a “critical and cost-effective solution”
DALLAS – In another sign of growing bipartisan support for national service, the United States Conference of Mayors today unanimously passed a resolution endorsing national service as a cost-effective solution to the challenges facing America’s cities.
The resolution passed this morning at the organization’s 82nd annual meeting in Dallas. It highlights the benefits of AmeriCorps and Senior Corps in improving lives, strengthening communities, and expanding economic opportunity, recognizing national service as “a critical and effective solution to community challenges facing mayors across the country.”
“We are thrilled by this strong, bipartisan endorsement of national service from the U.S. Conference of Mayors,” said Wendy Spencer, CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS). “Mayors are leaders who get things done, working hard every day to make their cities better places to live and work. I thank the U.S. Conference of Mayors for this important endorsement and for working with us to improve lives and strengthen communities through national service and volunteerism.”
The resolution expresses the organization’s support for several policy priorities including working with local organizations to further the impact of national service in cities; encouraging mayors to partner with CNCS to create additional sources of funding for national service positions; placing a priority on hiring AmeriCorps alumni in city government; encouraging mayors to participate in the AmeriCorps 20th anniversary on September 12, 2014; and serving as an official sponsor of the annual Mayors Day of Recognition for National Service.
The resolution builds on the success of the Mayors Day of Recognition for National Service that took place on April 1, 2014. On that day, 1, 762 mayors from all 50 states and the District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico joined together in a bipartisan show of support for AmeriCorps and Senior Corps. Together, the mayors represent more than 110 million citizens or one-third of all Americans.
The Mayors Day of Recognition for National Service was an idea first put forth in 2012 by Philadelphia Mayor Michael A. Nutter, then president of the U.S. Conference of Mayors. Mayor Nutter wanted to set aside a day when mayors across the country could recognize and thank those who make a difference through national service. CNCS worked with Mayor Nutter, the National League of Cities, and Cities of Service to establish the first Mayors Day on April 9, 2013. The inaugural effort attracted 832 bipartisan mayors. The following year, CNCS worked with U.S. Conference of Mayors President Scott Smith, Mayor of Mesa, Ariz., on the second annual Mayors Day, which engaged more than double the number who signed on the first year.
As the federal agency for service and volunteering, CNCS annually engages more than five million citizens in service at more than 60,000 locations in 8,500 cities across the country.
Through AmeriCorps, Senior Corps, the Social Innovation Fund, and other programs, CNCS leverages federal and private funds to support organizations that achieve measurable results where the need is greatest. A significant portion of this investment is focused on cities.
Whether supporting food banks and homeless shelters, restoring city parks, building homes, providing health services, tutoring and mentoring students, and managing community volunteers, national service members help mayors tackle tough problems.