For Immediate Release January 27, 2011

Contact: Roger Conner (703) 236-6218 (301) 252-7912

CCANO Oil Spill Recovery Expert Testifies at Senate Hearing
Tom Costanza outlines critical needs
(New Orleans, LA) – Tom Costanza, Executive Director of Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans Office of Justice and Peace, testifies in Washington, D.C. before the U.S. Senate Ad Hoc Subcommittee on Disaster Recovery on Thursday, January 27, 2011. The committee, chaired by Senator Mary Landrieu, will evaluate the progress made and the challenges remaining for oil spill claimants and social service providers, such as Catholic Charities. “Our fishermen are still suffering tremendous effects as a result of the BP oil spill. The claims process is cumbersome and doesn’t weigh the unique and special needs of the fishermen. People can’t wait any longer for help,” said Costanza. Catholic Charities is providing assistance to fishermen and their families through five oil spill relief centers in Jefferson, St. Bernard, Plaquemines and Orleans Parishes. Since May 1, 2010, Catholic Charities has provided counseling for almost 13,000 people* and direct assistance totaling nearly $350,000. Along with its affiliated ministry, Second Harvest Food Bank, Catholic Charities had provided almost $2,000,000 in food to those in need. Costanza will discuss the ongoing challenges of the fishing communities and make recommendations for additional funding and resources needed to continue and expand assistance to families whose livelihoods have been hard hit by the oil spill. A copy of Costanza’s remarks will be available after the hearing. Costanza will be available for local interviews Friday, January 28, 2011. About Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans is an umbrella agency with 42 programs and three affiliated ministries delivering health and human services to the poor and vulnerable. Catholic Charities services are rooted in the eight civil parishes of the Archdiocese of New Orleans, with food and nutrition services benefitting the entire state of Louisiana. Catholic Charities serves the homeless, hungry, the elderly, at-risk youth, pregnant women, individuals with developmental delays, and many more. For more information, please visit www.ccano.org *Many individuals and families have received multiple services from Catholic Charities. Catholic Charities USA’s members provide help and create hope for more than 9 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. For more information about Catholic Charities USA visit http://www.catholiccharitiesusa.org. About Catholic Charities USA

Catholic Charities USA is the national office for Catholic Charities agencies nationwide. 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.

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