An Open Letter to Connecticut State Leaders:
Let’s Stand Together for Our Most Vulnerable
May 31, 2023
Dear State Leaders and Residents of Connecticut,
We write to you today on behalf of the three Catholic Charities agencies in Connecticut — each a lifeline that people, communities, and organizations turn to when there is no other place to go. We humbly serve people from all faiths and backgrounds to create a sense of hope that empowers them to not only survive but also thrive and become a positive force in their communities.
But our work comes with a significant cost to cover facilities, programs, infrastructure, and the dedicated employees who work every day to fulfill our mission. And we have seen the cost of caring for people steadily increase in recent years, pushing us toward budget deficits that threaten our ability to continue.
While we are grateful for any increase in funding from the state, a recent proposition by legislators for a 3 percent increase is still significantly below what is necessary to maintain our current service levels. The Connecticut Community Nonprofit Alliance has said agencies like ours require at least a 9 percent increase.
We ask you to consider the vulnerable people who depend on us and their fate if we are forced to cut back on services. These include infants in our Early Head Start programs, children preparing for their school years, teenagers seeking refuge and educational support, young parents in need of basic necessities and job training, adults with developmental or intellectual disabilities, individuals battling mental illnesses, and senior citizens who seek daily social interaction.
These are the people who will suffer most if we eliminate services due to lack of funding. We implore you to not let them down, especially at a time when the state has a projected surplus, and allocate increased funding to nonprofit agencies.
Thank you for your consideration and understanding. We are looking forward to your support in this critical matter.
Jack Babbitt, Interim Chief Operating Officer, Catholic Charities, Diocese of Norwich Inc.
Michael Donoghue, Executive Director, Catholic Charities of Fairfield County, Inc.
Marek Kukulka, CEO, Catholic Charities – Archdiocese of Hartford