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Rev. Larry Snyder, President and CEO of Catholic Charities USA (CCUSA) responds to the President’s State of the Union: “Catholic Charities USA was heartened by the initiatives outlined by President Obama in [his] State of the Union speech that have the potential to improve the lives of many.
We were very encouraged by the President’s discussion on immigration and the recognition of the need for increased access to quality education and job training as important pathways to opportunity. However, we feel an urgency to also place a priority on addressing more effective methods for delivering vital services to those most vulnerable among us.
“While there is a very robust discussion occurring in Washington about how much money should be spent on various federal programs that serve the poor, few are engaged in conversation about how better to administer those services, how to maximize efficiency in delivery and how to identify new solutions to prevent and alleviate poverty at large.
We are hopeful that moving forward the President will lead a national conversation about identifying new methods and strategies for lifting more Americans onto a path of opportunity and self-sufficiency in a way that is economically sustainable for the nation, ensuring not just an ‘America Built to Last’, but an ‘America Built to Last – For All.’
“While the President discussed a deficit of trust between Main Street and Wall Street, CCUSA remains focused on addressing the needs of those on Back Street. At the moment, our nation’s safety net system is focused on helping these people get by, when we should be making sure they thrive.
We need comprehensive reform of the nation’s service delivery system that is market driven, results oriented and locally controlled, enabling the country to permanently make a difference in the lives of those living in poverty, and establishing accountability for the investment of taxpayer dollars.
“We recognize that the challenge at hand is great, but with great challenge comes great opportunity. Catholic Charities USA embraces this challenge and looks forward to working with the President to ensure we fulfill the moral responsibility of creating opportunity for everyone, ensuring an America built to last for all.”
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