Census Poverty Data Confirms Reality Local Catholic Charities Agencies Face Every Day

Sep 12, 2012, 12:48 ET from Catholic Charities USA

Catholic Charities USA Finds Hope in Possible Solutions to Nation's Poverty Crisis

ALEXANDRIA, Va., Sept. 12, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The release of today's Census Bureau report on poverty in America is further evidence of the urgent need for policymakers to come together to discuss solutions to the devastating reality facing tens of millions of individuals every day.  While this ends a three-year trend of increasing poverty rates, we must not forget that these numbers represent real people -- they are our children, our neighbors, our friends -- and we shouldn't feel content that there are still record number of people in this country struggling to make ends meet. 

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20081008/CCUSALOGO)

As a leading faith-based organization working to reduce poverty in America, the increase in the number of people living in poverty doesn't surprise us.  According to our most recent quarterly snapshot local Catholic Charities agencies consistently report on the challenges they face as they try to meet the increasing need for programs and services in their community with limited resources. In fact, the majority of our local agencies report being forced to create wait-lists or having to turn individuals and families away that come to them for help.

When confronted with the statistics that reflect the harsh reality facing millions of Americans, it is easy for our nation's leaders to simply comment on the crisis of poverty in our nation without taking substantive steps to address the issue or identify solutions to the underlying challenges associated with poverty.  It is essential at these moments more than ever to harness the solutions that exist in communities across the country to begin to cultivate a national dialogue.

Catholic Charities USA (CCUSA) stands ready to participate in a national dialogue about the nation's poverty crisis, which focuses on possible solutions that find better ways of serving those in need in a more economically sustainable way while remaining committed to continuing to provide the vital services that make up our nation's safety net. 

Catholic Charities USA's members provide help and create hope for more than 10 million people a year regardless of religious, social, or economic backgrounds. For almost 300 years, Catholic Charities agencies have worked to reduce poverty by providing a myriad of vital services in their communities, ranging from health care and job training to food and housing. In 2010, Catholic Charities USA celebrated its centennial anniversary.

SOURCE Catholic Charities USA