A Place to Call Home: 'Social Justice Sunday' Statement

Social Justice Sunday

Each year the Bishops issue a significant statement for the coming year on Social Justice Sunday (the last Sunday in September). The 2018–2019 Statement, titled A Place to Call Home: Making a home for everyone in our land, is a response to the growing problem of homelessness in Australia. The media release from Australian Catholic Bishops Conference states:

"The Australian Catholic Bishops are deeply concerned about Australia’s alarming growth in homelessness and insecure housing.

In their Social Justice Statement 2018-19, A Place to Call Home: Making a home for everyone in our land, released yesterday (Thursday, September 6) the Bishops have called on Australians to look beyond the immediate challenges of the average household budget, and to consider those who are homeless or facing housing stress because of skyrocketing rents and property prices.

In a letter to parishes around Australia, Australian Catholic Bishops Conference president, Archbishop Mark Coleridge, said: “It seems hard to believe that in a rich nation such as ours, the latest Census figures show that the number of Australians who are homeless has grown to more than 116,000.

“House prices and even rents are spiralling out of reach of too many families and placing huge financial stress on ordinary people, even when they are employed. For those living on pensions or allowances, finding secure housing can be a far greater challenge – one that often takes a terrible toll on social wellbeing and mental health.”

In his foreword to the statement, Australian Catholic Social Justice Council chairman, Bishop Vincent Long Van Nguyen OFM Conv. said a ruthless housing market was leaving people struggling to find secure and affordable housing, whether they lived in cities or regional areas."

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