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Policy Advocacy

Each year, Empire Justice Center’s policy team undertakes a robust policy agenda which includes legislative and administrative priorities we seek to advance as well as policies and programs we monitor closely to ensure they are not eroded. In this section of our website you will find bill memos, comments, letters, testimony, reports, advocacy materials and news articles related to this critical component of our work.

Read our 2017 State Legislative and Administrative Priorities.

For more information about Empire Justice Center’s policy work contact Kristin Brown, Vice President for Policy & Government Relations.

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LATEST LEGISLATIVE AGENDA/ACTION ALERTS

Session Wrap 2017: SWEAT- More to be done for Wage Justice :
Empire Justice Center and the SWEAT Coalition, consisting of over 70 groups representing workers, businesses, unions, anti-poverty groups and faith-based groups, worked hard to advocate for the SWEAT Bill - legislation designed to fight against New York’s wage theft epidemic and wage collection crisis, and to close loopholes in our state’s labor laws. Read More

Legislative Updates

 

LEGISLATIVE MEMOS

Empire Justice Memo of Support: Expand Access to Drivers’ Licenses
Empire Justice Center strongly supports A.4050, which would authorize the Department of Motor Vehicles to issue limited purpose drivers’ licenses without requiring applicants to establish their legal presence at the time of the application. Read More

Empire Justice Memo of Support: New York State Must Require that Student Loan Servicers be Licensed
Student loan servicing has generally gone unregulated in New York State, and confusion about student loans is common among borrowers, in part because there are no common rules. This bill would set a baseline level of procedures and protections to provide common sense notice and protections for borrowers. Read More

Memo of Support: Create More Subsidies for Low Income Working Families
This analysis from Empire Justice Center, The Federation of Protestant Welfare Agencies, the Center for Children's Initiatives and The Legal Aid Society shows how every freed up child care slot for infants of public assistance recipients creates three slots for working families. Read More

Memoranda of Support/Opposition


 POLICY LETTERS

Empire Justice Letter of Support for Name Change Legislation
A.2242 (Bronson)/S.5240 (Savino) not only is in line with existing policy, but enhances and clarifies the law for name change applicants who need the benefit of the law’s critical safety protections. Read More

Empire Justice Letter of Support: Restore Meaning to the Medicaid Managed Care Prescriber Prevails Law
Empire Justice Center urges Governor Cuomo to sign A.7208/S.4893 amending New York Social Services Law (SSL) § 364-j(25) regarding prescriber prevails procedures in Medicaid managed care. Read More

Joint Letter of Support: Pass Legislation to Protect Crime and Domestic Violence Victims!
In New York State, and nationwide, no victim of domestic violence or other person threatened with a crime should be afraid to access police or emergency assistance because doing so may jeopardize their housing. Read More

 COMMENTS

Empire Justice Comments on Strengthening Consumer Protections in the Affordable Care Act
Read our comments to HHS, which were submitted in conjunction with several state and national partners, on how reducing regulatory burdens is a thin disguise for reducing much-needed consumer protections. Read More

Empire Jusitce Comments on Protecting the Mortgage Insurance Fund
Empire Justice Center's comments focus on how HUD’s current foreclosure alternatives program for FHA-insured loans avoids unnecessary payment of insurance claims, and thus protects the mortgage insurance fund (Fund) and our communities. Read More

Joint Comments on Sterling Bancorp's Acquisition of Astoria Financial
We joined with other advocacy organizations representing Long Island to submit comments on Sterling Bancorp’s Proposed Acquisition of Astoria Financial Corporation. Read More

Policy Letters Comments


TESTIMONY

Empire Justice Testimony on the New York State Supplement Program
Empire Justice Center testimony on the impact that State takeover has had on the administration of the State Supplement Program and delivery of benefits to eligible recipients. Read More

Empire Justice Center Testimony on Barriers to Accessing Quality Child Care
Child care is in crisis. Senior Attorney Susan Antos testifies before joint committees on what can be done to improve access and affordability of child care for low income families. Read More

 


POLICY COLLABORATIONS

Joint Memo of Support: Preserve the Right to Call 911
No victim of domestic violence or other person threatened with a crime in New York should be afraid to access police or emergency assistance because doing so may jeopardize their housing. Nevertheless, numerous municipalities throughout New York have passed local laws, so called “nuisance ordinances,” that have this precise result. Read More

MCCAP: Statewide Partners Maximize Hundreds of Thousands of Dollars in Federal Prescription Drug Benefits and Health Resources for Low Income Elderly and Disabled New Yorkers
The Managed Care Consumer Assistance Program (MCCAP) is a statewide program that provides essential assistance to low income seniors and people with disabilities in access health services and reducing their Medicare costs. Read More

Joint Letter of Support: Pass Legislation to Protect Crime and Domestic Violence Victims!
In New York State, and nationwide, no victim of domestic violence or other person threatened with a crime should be afraid to access police or emergency assistance because doing so may jeopardize their housing. Read More

 POLICY REALTED NEWS ITEMS

Empire Justice Center Statement on Governor Cuomo's Hate and Human Rights Laws Expansion

The horrifying events that transpired in Charlottesville this past weekend showed us all that we have a long road ahead of us to reach a place where hate has no home in our hearts. We all have a responsibility to stand for what it right. Read More

Empire Justice Stands with Immigrants & Their Families

Empire Justice Center is proud to be one of more than 180 organizations across the country to stand up and speak out against the completely un-American attack on immigrants proposed by Senators David Perdue (R-GA) and Tom Cotton (R-AR), and championed by President Donald Trump. Read More

Henrietta woman fights foreclosure to keep her house and wins (Democrat & Chronicle)

The foreclosure process can be maddening, even to attorneys who deal with it for a living... But free counseling and legal services can help distressed homeowners avoid certain pitfalls that can hurt a person’s chances of getting a loan modification, extension or lower interest rate. Read More

Policy Collaborations Policy Related News Items


POLICY RELATED ARTICLES

Session Wrap 2017: Employment & Financial Literacy :
Just before the 2017 legislative session ended, a bill making two modifications to the public assistance work rules passed both the Senate and the Assembly and will now be sent to the Governor for his signature. This legislation is well intentioned, designed to facilitate women’s entry into non-traditional jobs, and to offer welfare recipients financial literacy education as a work activity, but some of the details may limit the effectiveness and impact of the law. Read More

Session Wrap 2017: Strengthening Lead Poisoning Protections :
Low income children are particularly at risk because they often live in rental housing which is not well maintained by the owner. Low income children are particularly at risk because they often live in rental housing which is not well maintained by the owner. Read More

Session Wrap 2017: SWEAT- More to be done for Wage Justice :
Empire Justice Center and the SWEAT Coalition, consisting of over 70 groups representing workers, businesses, unions, anti-poverty groups and faith-based groups, worked hard to advocate for the SWEAT Bill - legislation designed to fight against New York’s wage theft epidemic and wage collection crisis, and to close loopholes in our state’s labor laws. Read More

Related Policy Articles


POLICY RELATED REPORTS

Know Your Rights: A Guide to Fighting Discrimination Against Transgender & Gender Non-Conforming New Yorkers Under the New York State Human Rights Law   Transgender and gender-nonconforming people in New York State are now clearly protected by our Human Rights Law (HRL), thanks to new regulations issued earlier this year. Our NEW GUIDE explains what gender identity-based discrimination might look like, and how to exercise your rights under the HRL.   Read More
 
NYRL Report: Divergent Paths  Divergent Paths reveals wide variations in the implementation of foreclosure settlement conference rules. The wide variations in implementation have the potential to leave tens of thousands of New Yorkers at heightened risk of losing their homes.  Read More
 

Policy Related Reports



POLICY RELATED NEWSLETTERS

Policy Matters July 2017: Session Wrap
Empire Justice Center's latest edition of Policy Matters. Read More

 

Policy Related Newsletters