Shalom – Economic Justice and Poverty

ShalomHuman Dignity | Economic Justice and Poverty | Integrity of CreationPeace and Non-Violence

Economic Justice and Poverty

The School Sisters of Notre Dame are committed to exploring and facing the complexity of the economic, social, and political causes of poverty.  We look at issues of economic justice through the lens of Catholic Social Teaching which tells us:

  • The economy exists for the person, not the person for the economy.
  • All people have the right to economic initiative, productive work, just wages and benefits, decent working conditions as well as the right to organize/join a union.
  • A fundamental moral measure of any economy is how the poor and vulnerable, including both human and other-than-human members of the Earth community, are faring.

As a global congregation, we have seen firsthand that the poor often do not benefit from globalization and the global economy. We therefore engage our governments to develop:

  • Trade policies that promote human dignity and address poverty and protect the planet
  • Aid policies and foreign aid programs that foster long-term development and empowerment of the poor
  • Debt policies which help the poorest countries in ways that reduce poverty and promote sustainable development.

Corporate Responsibility

SSNDs partner with other religious investors to dialogue with some of the world’s largest and most influential publicly held corporations about steps they can take to protect our planet and make sure the workers who grow and produce their products are treated with respect and paid a livable wage.

We also try to reflect our solidarity with our sisters and brothers around the world through our own thoughtful purchasing practices, including our support for clean (sweat-free) clothes campaigns and utilization of fair trade products.


Poverty has many casualties. One that particularly resonates with SSNDs is education, especially education for girls.  We are strong supporters of access to quality education for all.  We work on this issue at the local, national, and international levels.

Join with us in our efforts. Learn more: Global Call to Action Against Poverty (white band) campaign, Make Poverty History campaign, the Millennium Development Goals, the ONE campaign, or Education for All.