For Immediate Release September 16, 2011

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

Pennsylvania Senator Robert Casey Re-Introduces The National Opportunity and Community Renewal Act in the U.S. Senate
Legislation Could Revitalize the American Safety Net
Alexandria, VA– Sen. Robert P. Casey (D-PA) re-introduced The National Opportunity and Community Renewal Act, (NOCRA) S. 1565 yesterday (September 15). The legislation, originally introduced in September of 2010, focuses on strategies to reform the safety net that are market driven, results oriented and locally controlled. A product of Catholic Charities USA’s (CCUSA) Centennial year, NOCRA is reflective of innovative poverty relief strategies currently being successfully implemented by service providers in communities across the country. “The principles represented in this legislation will be vital to any successful reform of our nation’s service delivery system,” said CCUSA’s Candy S. Hill, Senior Vice President for Social Policy and Government Affairs. “For far too long our nation has remained complacent as regards the safety net, and as a result, tens of millions of Americans continue to suffer in poverty. We look forward to continuing the important conversation with our nation’s policymakers, service providers and thought leaders that was catalyzed when this legislation was first introduced.” Central components of NOCRA include the implementation of individual opportunity plans for those living in poverty, enabling a locally controlled approach to service delivery, incentivizing innovating funding streams, and utilizing waivers to ensure limited resources are focused on precise areas of need. “The recent U.S. Census Bureau report on poverty in America is reflective of the devastating reality in which Catholic Charities USA operates every day,” said Reverend Larry Snyder, President of Catholic Charities USA. “This report provided further evidence that the United States of America needs comprehensive reform of the nation’s service delivery system. We are pleased to be working with Senator Casey on this important re-introduction in our efforts to meet the moral obligation we have as a country to address this growing crisis.” For more information on NOCRA, please visit: http://www.catholiccharitiesusa.org/page.aspx?pid=2219 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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