Education and Advocacy are the final words of Interfaith Works mission statement. And we take it seriously. As you partner with us in our programs through service, we ask that you partner with us to change systems that don’t work. We must look at the systemic causes of poverty, and serve as advocates, seeking to remove regulatory and legislative barriers that unfairly impact fragile, vulnerable neighbors and discover new solutions for working poor families struggling to make ends meet in our County.
Take Action on Safety Net Issues with the County Council
The County Council is deliberating budget priorities during the coming months and your voice must be heard. IW is a member of the Safety Net Coalition
, and we are One Voice for the Vulnerable. Our message is clear: protect the vulnerable from budget cuts.
It is a myth that rich counties don’t have poor people. Montgomery County has 50,000 people living below the Federal Poverty Level, and one-third of them are children.
- More than one in four children (36,000) are eligible for free and reduced prices meals in our public school system
- 35% of the low-wage working parents have no health insurance
- 40% of renters spend more than 25% of their income on housing
- 17,000 people are on the waiting list for subsidized housing vouchers, which will do little to help locate affordable housing in a market with a 3% vacancy rate.
The Community Action Board of Montgomery County has recently reported that the Minimum Standard of Need in Montgomery County (now called the self sufficiency standard) indicates a family of three (parent, infant and preschooler) needs $62,146 per year to meet basic needs: rent, utilities, food, clothing, transportation, childcare, and health insurance. The provider for this family must make $29.83 an hour to meet minimal needs without subsidies. There are 38,211 families living under that minimum standard of need – and 37,790 children in those families.If you think changing the system is important, then you should become apart of Interfaith Works Education and Advocacy work. We give voice to our low-income neighbors by helping communities move together toward a common vision of social justice and developing congregation and stakeholder participation in the policy making process. Our challenge is to make our priorities, the priorities of our community and our elected officials.