Intelligent Consumer Spending:  Resources for Informed Purchasing

Jun 13th, 2014

Caring for God’s Creation & the Poor

“People have to struggle to live and, frequently, to live in an undignified way. One cause of this situation, in my opinion, is in the our relationship with money, and our acceptance of its power over ourselves and our society.”  ~Pope Francis

Stewardship Tip

Intelligent Consumer Spending:  Resources for Informed Purchasing.

Consumer choices shape the economy. According to the most recent Consumer Expenditures survey, the average U.S. household spent $51,442 in 2012. This consumer spending is an essential part of the U.S. economic system and influences both methods of production and attitudes toward labor. In this context, consumer choice can be a tool for bringing greater justice into society. Each dollar spent is a chance to consider how our choices reflect the principles of Catholic Social Teaching.

The following links illustrate how the marketplace can be used to support justice in labor and production practices.

  • Clothing No Sweat: Union Made Apparel (http://nosweatapparel.com/)
  • Coffee Catholic Relief Services Coffee Project (http://www.crsfairtrade.org/)
  • Peace Coffee (http://www.peacecoffee.com/)
  • Fair Trade Advocacy Organizations Catholic Relief Services (http://www.catholicrelief.org/) Citizens Trade Campaign (http://www.citizenstrade.org/)
  • Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (http://www.iatp.org/)
  • National Catholic Rural Life Conference (http://www.ncrlc.com/)
  • United for A Fair Economy (http://www.faireconomy.org/)
  • Fair Trade USA (http://fairtradeusa.org/)
  • Food and Environmental Sustainability Heifer Gift Catalog (http://catalog.heifer.org/)
  • Food Alliance (http://foodalliance.org/)
  • Minnesota Food Association (http://www.mnfoodassociation.org/)
  • Whole Farm Coop (http://localfoods.umn.edu/wholefarmcooperative)
  • Environmental Working Group (http://www.ewg.org/)
  • GreenFaith (http://greenfaith.org/)
  • General Fair Trade Products and Crafts Alternative Gifts International (http://www.altgifts.org/) Fair Trade Federation (http://www.fairtradefederation.com/)
  • Global Exchange (http://www.globalexchange.org/)
  • Green Pages (http://www.greenpages.org/)
  • Ten Thousand Villages (http://www.tenthousandvillages.com/)
  • SERRV International (http://www.serrv.org/)

Socially Responsible Investing:

  • Calvert Group (http://www.calvert.com/NRC/literature/documents/TL10035.pdf)
  • Pax World Fund (http://www.paxfund.com/)
  • Social Funds (http://www.socialfunds.com/)
  • Domini Social Investments (http://www.domini.com/)
  • Co-Op America (http://www.coopamerica.org/socialinvesting/index.cfm)

(Information compiled by Catholic Charities Sowers of Justice from the “Social Justice Meet-Up” on 5/8/14.)  

Peace & Justice Committee