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|According to the World Bank, almost half the world - over three billion people - live on less than $2.50 a day. |
According to UNICEF, 22,000 children die each day due to poverty.
Here in America, 35.9 million people live below the poverty line, including 12.9 million children according to the US Census Bureau.
The poorest people have less access to clean water, nutrition, health care, education, shelter and clothing.
One of the primary themes of Catholic Social Teaching is the option for the poor. The Office for Social Justice explains this principle as such: "The moral test of a society is how it treats its most vulnerable members. The poor have the most urgent moral claim on the conscience of the nation. We are called to look at public policy decisions in terms of how they affect the poor."
The poorest are also often marginalized from society - giving them little representation or voice in public and political debates. As Franciscans, we are compelled to care for our sisters and brothers who struggle to break the cycle of poverty, by advocating to bring about changes at the state, federal, and global level. We continue to work to eliminate the root causes of poverty in order to eliminate need both home and abroad.
One of the Millennium Development Goals established by the United Nations is to end poverty and hunger. Read about the current status of that goal here.