Current Issues and Actions
Screening "Inequality for All"

"End Child Poverty Wisconsin" Campaign
ADD YOUR NAME, help us reach 10,000 Wisconsinites calling for an End to Child Poverty in Wisconsin!

On December 14th, 2017, a coalition of faith-based networks and anti-poverty groups held concurrent announcements in multiple cities of a bold new campaign to end child poverty in Wisconsin. The campaign seeks to inspire Wisconsin to set a goal of eliminating child poverty, by holding itself accountable for reducing both child poverty and racial disparities by half in the next decade.

The campaign is a product of 3 years of intensive policy discussions and moral reflection at 24 churches and other religious institutions throughout Wisconsin. The lead coalition partners are four statewide organizations: WISDOM, Wisconsin Council of Churches, Kids Forward, and Citizen Action of Wisconsin Education Fund

This announcement by religious leaders and social justice advocates uses the occasion of the holiday season to raise our voices on behalf of committing Wisconsin to ending child poverty and creating a state where every child has the real opportunity to thrive and succeed.
Learn more.

The Wisconsin Council of Churches offers the following resources for use in your congregation. Check them out.

Host a parish or in home screening of "Inequality for All" 
A passionate argument for the middle class.  The 400 richest Americans now own more wealth than the bottom 150 million combined. Former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich sees this disparity as a threat to democracy. “Inequality for All" explains why.  Discussion guide and discussion leaders and assistance with promotion are available through Catholics for Peace and Justice.  Contact us at  

Inequality for All – Resource and Action Guide
Contact and Educate Your Legislators Using 

United States Conference of Catholic Bishops Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development
“Tax revenues and public spending take on crucial economic importance for every civil and political community. The goal to be sought is public financing that is itself capable of becoming an instrument of development and solidarity.” As Congress begins deliberations on possible tax reform based on the “Unified Framework for Fixing Our Broken Tax Code,” the following moral principles are offered to assist you:

1. Care for the poor.
2. Family formation and strengthening.
3. Progressivity of the tax code.
4. Adequate revenue for the sake of the common good.
5. Avoiding cuts to poverty programs to finance tax reform.
6. Incentivize charitable giving and development.

National tax policy is complex, and its effects far-reaching. As the country wrestles with how best to raise adequate revenue to serve the common good and provide increased financial stability, you are urged to recognize the critical obligation of creating a just framework aimed at the economic security of all people, especially the least of these.

Read Bishop Frank J. Dewane's full letters to the US Senate and US House of Representatives here.

Employ Milwaukee Job and Training Opportunities
Employ Milwaukee is the Workforce Development Board for Milwaukee County. Employ Milwaukee works with businesses to help them fill their workforce needs, as well as job-seekers get the skills and training they need to secure employment in good jobs with decent wages, benefits and career ladders. They have a listserv with 100+ contacts that includes our contracted service providers, non-profit organizations, community partners, other religious organizations, libraries, resource rooms, etc. in order to get the word out far and wide about job and training opportunities for those interested.

If you are interested in this type of information, please contact Sara Rogers at or (414-270-1727) to be added to the list serve.

An intractable problem: For the last half-century, Milwaukee has been caught in a relentless social and economic spiral, By John Schmid and Kevin Crowe, JS Online 

Public health experts in Milwaukee and around the nation now see a direct link between childhood trauma and an incapacitated workforce. Improving the latter is impossible without addressing the former. Children exposed to abuse, violence and neglect may not be able to concentrate in school, much less job training programs. They often grow up without the temperament to coordinate with customers and co-workers. They struggle with sleep disorders and register high levels of absenteeism.   "Adding good new jobs won’t heal post-traumatic stress,"  Read the Article

Poverty, Inequality and Economics: A Series of Short Films by Robert Reich

In MoveOn’s Big Picture video series on how to save the economy hosted on their website, former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich lays out a series of economic principles and policy proposals that could create an economy that works for everyone. The series includes fight for $15, End Mass Incarceration, Help Working Families, Reinvent Education and more. Each of the videos is less than three minutes. View them here.
Paul Ryan on Past Comments About the Poor: 'I Was Just Wrong'
"There was a time when I would talk about a difference between 'makers' and 'takers' in our country, referring to people who accepted government benefits. But as I spent more time listening, and really learning the root causes of poverty, I realized I was wrong. 'Takers' wasn’t how to refer to a single mom stuck in a poverty trap, just trying to take care of her family. Most people don't want to be dependent. And to label a whole group of Americans that way was wrong. I shouldn’t castigate a large group of Americans to make a point.

"So I stopped thinking about it that way—and talking about it that way. But I didn’t come out and say all this to be politically correct. I was just wrong." See more

A Few Things You Need to Know About Poverty in the U.S. Right Now

As Catholics, we strive for an economy that places people first. Everyone has a right to live in dignity, free from poverty, with decent work at just wages. Life in America is far from our Catholic understanding of a just economy.  Read the article

Resources for Combating Poverty
Wisconsin Council of Churches 

Building Thriving Community; Beyond Segregation in Milwaukee – Sunday, Oct 5 

Community Organizers
WISDOM Affiliates – 11x15 Prison Reform   
Common Ground – Fair Play, Milwaukee Rising, Healthcare Coop    

Citizens United/Campaign Funding Reform
Story of Citizens United 

Minimum Wage
Center on Budget and Policy Priorities offers a succinct primer on the minimum wage  

Also see for campaigns on raising the minimum wage.

Voter Registration - Milwaukee County Referendum