The Voice of the Poor

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Shadow of family waiting for aid Who is the Voice of the Poor?
Voice of the Poor (VOP) is the advocacy arm of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul. With members representing every section and demographic of the nation, we identify those issues that are critical to those living in poverty and need, and help bring attention to them so communities and our elected representatives can help develop strategies and tactics that will provide the most effective and efficient means to reduce or eliminate poverty.
Voice of the Poor book cover Why the Voice of the Poor?
The Society of St. Vincent de Paul is concerned not only with alleviating need but also with identifying those structures, societal and legislative, that cause and perpetuate poverty. This mission manifests itself in the Society’s admonition to “End Poverty Through Systemic Change.”
Two women packing up supplies What Has Been Accomplished?
The Voice of the Poor has prepared eleven papers that form the basis for the Society’s positions on most of the major issues that affect the people we serve. These Position Papers contain practical suggestions for activities and projects which conferences and councils may undertake. In addition, VOP provides timely updates and suggestions for needed advocacy through CAPWIZ, a simple internet communication tool. The VOP committee through its regional VOP representatives also provides information and assistance to councils in developing the advocacy component of their Vincentian ministry. In conjunction with other groups committed to social justice, the VOP initiative addresses the systemic problems which cause inequity and hardship.  Additional information on VOP accomplishments can be found in the 2013 Annual Assembly National Voice of the Poor Update here.
Two generations at a computer How You Can Get Involved
Serving as advocates for those living in poverty and representing them and their interests to our state and national legislators is a huge task. We spearhead that effort through Capwiz©, an online system that allows members and supporters of the Society to reach out to lawmakers when there is legislative activity ― or lack of it ― that affects those living in poverty.
stack of papers

Where the Society of St. Vincent de Paul Stands
Position papers are an essential part of establishing the view of the Society regarding the issues that affect those in need. The position papers of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul are rooted in our Catholic faith and define our view of the social issues related to our Vincentian mission of helping those in need and living in poverty.