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Press Release: NETWORK Nuns Launch Nine-state Bus Tour Highlighting How Federal Budget Cuts Harm Struggling Families

FOR RELEASE: June 6, 2012                                                          

CONTACT: Stephanie Niedringhaus, 202-347-9797 x224,  sniedringhaus@networklobby.org

Washington: NETWORK today announced a multi-state bus trip by Catholic Sisters highlighting the work Sisters do to meet the needs of people at the economic margins and revealing how federal budget cuts proposed by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) and passed by the House of Representatives will hurt struggling families in these states. 

The tour is called, “Nuns on the Bus: Nuns Drive for Faith, Family and Fairness.”

The Sisters will board the bus in Ames, Iowa on June 18 and make stops in Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Maryland and Virginia, where the trip will end on July 2. Along the way, they will visit Catholic-sponsored social service agencies that serve people who will be further harmed by proposed budget cuts, and they will meet with congressional offices to advocate for a fair budget. Local Church and political officials and the media are invited to meet with the Sisters during their daily stops.

The Vatican recently criticized Catholic Sisters in the U.S. for spending too much time working for social justice instead of speaking out on issues such as gay marriage and abortion. Despite the controversy, Catholic Sisters stand with the Bishops in criticizing the Ryan budget and are committed to staying faithful to their mission to serve those in need. Because of their work, Sisters see the suffering of people in poverty on a daily basis. As a result, they recognize the harm that the Ryan budget will cause, including:

  • Undermining the food stamp program (SNAP) at a time when millions need it to feed their families
  • Beginning to shift Medicare to a voucher program, thus driving more seniors into poverty
  • Giving large tax breaks to the wealthy at the expense of protections for struggling families
  • Drastically cutting funding for health insurance programs for low-income people, causing millions to lose access to healthcare
  • Increasing Pentagon spending while cutting programs that serve people in need -- despite the Pentagon saying there are military programs that should be cut.

The bus tour is meant to focus attention on the enormous moral choices facing our country. Do we choose to be a nation of individualism and fear where the rich get richer at the expense of those in need? Or do we reclaim the principles of our founders and work together for all the people to form a more perfect union?