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Campaign to Reduce Poverty in America May 5, 2008.

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Presentation on theme: "Campaign to Reduce Poverty in America May 5, 2008."— Presentation transcript:

1 Campaign to Reduce Poverty in America May 5, 2008

2 Campaign to Reduce Poverty in America Campaign Goals  Reduce poverty rate in the United States by 50% by the year  Call upon the government to do more to serve those who are poor and to improve public policies that strengthen and support families.

3 Campaign to Reduce Poverty in America Campaign Goals  Educate policy makers and the public about the struggles of those living in poverty and the good work of those who serve them in local communities.  Engage those who are most impacted by government policies to be active participants in developing solutions to reducing poverty.

4 Campaign to Reduce Poverty in America Policy Papers  Poverty in America: A Threat to the Common Good (2007)  Poverty and Racism: Overlapping Threats to the Common Good (2008)

5 Poverty in America: A Threat to the Common Good POVERTY FACTS  37 million people live below the official federal poverty level ($20,000,HH=4)  Poverty rates are highest in central cities and in rural areas  The number of people living in poverty increased by 5.3 million between 2000 and 2004

6 POVERTY FACTS  Poverty rates by ethnic group  Non-Hispanic Whites 8%  African Americans 24.1%  Hispanics 21.8%  Native Americans 23.2% Poverty in America: A Threat to the Common Good

7 POVERTY FACTS  Poverty rates for children, by ethnic group  Whites 10%  African Americans 33%  Hispanics 28%  Native Americans 27% Poverty in America: A Threat to the Common Good

8 POVERTY FACTS  Two-thirds of those in poverty are the working poor  Almost half of all Americans will have experienced poverty for a year or more by the time they reach age 60 Poverty in America: A Threat to the Common Good

9 Poverty in Louisiana 2006  1.6 million households in Louisiana  19% of people were in poverty  28% of related children under 18 were below the poverty level  14% of people 65 year old and over were below the poverty level

10 Poverty in Louisiana 2006  14% of all families had incomes below the poverty level  39% of female head-of-household families had incomes below the poverty level

11 Poverty in Houma- Thibodaux Houma 2000  8,235 families  16.4% of all families were below the poverty level  40.6% of female head- of-household families had incomes below the poverty level Thibodaux 2000  3,289 families  20.6% of all families were below the poverty level  51.5% of female head- of-household families had incomes below the poverty level

12 Poverty and Racism: Overlapping Threats to the Common Good Key Events Linking Race and Poverty  Slavery – labor of enslaved created wealth for others  Indian Removal Act of 1830  Plessy v. Ferguson (1896)

13 Key Events Linking Race and Poverty  Social Security Act of 1935  Wagner Act of 1935  Federal Housing Administration loan practices ( ) Poverty in America: A Threat to the Common Good

14 Discussion Questions  How many are hearing of these statistics for the first time?  What shocked or disturbed you most?  Who would like to give us a definition of poverty?  What are some misconceptions about poverty?  What does poverty look like in this community?

15 Call to Action  Create more livable wage jobs and raise wages, including the minimum wage  Invest in social policies that support lower-income families and individuals  Improve access to safe and stable child care  Create more affordable housing  Improve access to education and training

16 Call to Action  Support progressive affirmative action policies in education and employment  Improve fair housing laws  Enact comprehensive immigration policies  Address the disparities and deficiencies in the criminal justice system

17 Things You Can Do REFLECT  Pray  Review Catholic social teaching  Read the papers  Conduct a self-examination  Act

18 Things You Can Do GET INFORMED  Educate yourself about poverty in your community and in the United States  Make yourself familiar with legislation and policy proposals  Identify a specific issue on which to become an expert

19 Things You Can Do GET ORGANIZED  Identify existing resources or advocacy groups working on similar issues  Develop a working group within your church or neighborhood

20 Things You Can Do GET INVOLVED  Get involved in advocacy activities at the local, state and national levels  Contact your local elected officials with specific concerns about poverty in your community  Join our legislative network and become an active participant

21 Prayer of St. Francis Make me a channel of your peace, Where there is hatred, let me bring Your love, Where there is injury, Your pardon Lord And where there’s doubt, true faith in You

22 Prayer of St. Francis Make me a channel of your peace, Where there’s despair in life let me bring hope, When there is darkness – only light And where there’s sadness, ever joy

23 Prayer of St. Francis Oh Master, grant that I may never seek So much to be consoled as to console, To be understood, as to understand, To be loved, as to love with all my soul

24 Prayer of St. Francis Make me a channel of your peace, It is in pardoning that we are pardoned, In giving to all men that we receive, And in dying that we’re born to eternal life.


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