Print this page

Press Release: Sister Simone Campbell Testifies on Poverty before Rep. Paul Ryan’s Committee

FOR RELEASE: July 31, 2013                                                                              

CONTACT: Stephanie Niedringhaus, 202-347-9797 x224,

Washington, DC: Sister Simone Campbell, NETWORK Executive Director, testified today before the House Budget Committee about government programs that address poverty. The committee is chaired by Representative Paul Ryan, whose 2012 budget proposals were criticized by NETWORK and NETWORK’s “Nuns on the Bus” because they included heavy cuts to vital programs that help people at the economic margins.

She spoke about the importance of public/private partnerships in serving the needs of all people, including those in poverty. Noting that one of the key drivers of poverty today is low wages, she reminded the committee that “68% of the children living in poverty live in families with working parents… The most important programs that help these families survive are principally EITC, CTC and SNAP, Medicaid and CHIP. They are hugely successful programs making a big difference.”

Noting that she had met with many people whose lives are directly impacted by programs such as these, she told some of their stories. She spoke of a Milwaukee couple, both with jobs but whose work hours had been cut back, who needed food stamps and church-provided food so their children could be fed. Another story was of a young homeless Iowa moth