|Illinois Youth Advocate Program|
|The Illinois Youth Advocate Program’s overall goals are to minimize the use of institutionalization, secure detention and confinement of youth; to develop innovative, viable and cost-effective community-based alternatives for youth involved in the juvenile justice, child welfare, and mental health systems in Illinois; and to advocate on behalf of youth through citizen involvement and direct community services which focus on permanency and least restrictive environment for all youth.|
Category Archives: Civic Engagement
The National Organization for Women (NOW) is the largest organization of feminist activists in the United States. NOW has 500,000 contributing members and 550 chapters in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
Since its founding in 1966, NOW’s goal has been to take action to bring about equality for all women. NOW works to eliminate discrimination and harassment in the workplace, schools, the justice system, and all other sectors of society; secure abortion, birth control and reproductive rights for all women; end all forms of violence against women; eradicate racism, sexism and homophobia; and promote equality and justice in our society.
NOW is one of the few multi-issue progressive organizations in the United States. NOW stands against all oppression, recognizing that racism, sexism and homophobia are interrelated, that other forms of oppression such as classism and ableism work together with these three to keep power and privilege concentrated in the hands of a few.
Government, our judicial system, big business, mainstream media and other institutions treat many groups in our society like second-class citizens. Pitting us against each other is an essential mechanism for maintaining the status quo. Together, we can create the change we’ve been dreaming of—our unity is our strength.
Chicago NOW200 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 602Chicago, IL 60601
Identify and analyze issues, develop policy options, and promote fair, efficient and progressive tax, spending and economic policies that improve the well-being of low and moderate income families in Illinois.The Center for Tax and Budget Accountability (“CTBA”) is a non-profit, bi-partisan research and advocacy think tank committed to ensuring that tax, spending and economic policies are fair and just, and promote opportunities for everyone, regardless of economic or social status. CTBA’s mission is three-fold. First, CTBA develops comprehensive and accurate data sets that objectively describe the cost of and demand for public services, and government’s fiscal capacity to fund those services.Second, utilizing analytical research tools, CTBA evaluates the impact of fiscal policies on quality of life issues affecting families.Third, CTBA designs and then promotes policies that would make a state’s fiscal system sound, fair, sustainable and competitive, so that state government has the fiscal capacity to provide the wide range of economic, healthcare, education and social services demanded by the public. In each instance, CTBA’s advocacy work grows out of the findings produced by objective examination of the data. CTBA focuses on fiscal capacity because communities with the greatest need for public services typically lack adequate financial resources to fund them. Frequently, the data show that for fundamental services like education, inequitable public funding results in inequitable services. CTBA’s research confirms that the best way to ensure all families, whether living in rural, suburban, urban, economically distressed, middle-class or advantaged communities, receive quality public services, is to ensure the state plays its role in funding those services.CTBA utilizes this data-driven approach to: (i) link fiscal policy to the availability of quality, essential public services; (ii) quantify the contribution public services make to creating a more just society, by assisting families attain more income stability, healthcare, social services, housing, access to jobs and access to a quality public education; (iii) identify both how public services contribute to the general economy and the creation of wealth, and when public spending or tax policy is not accountable or is not generating the anticipated public benefits; (iv) advocate on behalf of, and provide a voice for poor, low and middle income families who frequently are absent from crucial fiscal policy debates; and (v) inform the public debate on the role of government in contributing to a just society. CTBA uses a data-focused, bipartisan approach to work in partnership with legislators, community groups and other organizations to help change both public policy and perceptions. CTBA was founded in 2000. In its brief existence, CTBA has had a number of policy, media and outreach successes. From being appointed technical advisor to various state legislative committees and commissions, to ultimately helping draft legislation and design administrative reforms that have generated or maintained over $2 billion in revenue for public services and created the state’s Earned Income Tax Credit, CTBA continually works to take a data-driven, bipartisan and collaborative approach to public policy reform Website: http://www.ctbaonline.org Center for Tax and Budget Accountability
70 E. Lake Street, Suite 1700
Chicago, IL 60601 Phone: (312) 332-1049 Facsimile: (312) 578-9258 Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Business and Professional People for the Public Interest (BPI) is a public interest law and policy center that seeks out and addresses compelling issues of social justice and quality of life in the Chicago region. BPI’s staff of lawyers and policy analysts uses legal and policy research, advocacy, organizing, litigation and collaboration with non-profit, business, community and governmental organizations to accomplish its mission. Currently BPI works to transform segregated public housing, revitalize economically disadvantaged communities, improve Chicago’s public schools, and increase the supply of affordable housing throughout the region. Website: http://www.bpichicago.org Business and Professional People for the Public Interest (BPI)
25 East Washington Street, Suite 1515
Chicago, Illinois 60602Ph | 312.641.5570
Fax | 312.641.5454
Email | email@example.com
Founded in 1923 by a group of citizens concerned about the growing influence of the Capone mob, the Better Government Association (BGA) is an independent, non-partisan government watchdog group committed to fighting waste, corruption and inefficiency in government. The BGA applies investigative journalism techniques, litigation, and public policy studies to expose problems, inform citizens about the operations of their government and lay the groundwork for substantive legislative and administrative reforms. The BGA remains committed to the same principles that mobilized our founders more than 80 years ago: A public office is a public trust. Anything that diminishes that trust, such as waste, fraud and corruption, ultimately undermines the public’s confidence in government. Such actions cost legitimate programs scarce resources and lead to decisions based upon private gain rather than public good. http://www.bettergov.org Contact: Better Government Association
11 East Adams Street, Suite 608
Chicago, IL 60603
Phone: (312) 427-8330
Fax: (312) 386-9203Email Address:firstname.lastname@example.org
|Parents United for Responsible Education (PURE)|
|Parents United for Responsible Education (PURE) exists to build support for and enhance the quality of public education in the city of Chicago by informing parents about educational issues, bringing the views of parents into the decision-making process, and acting as an advocate for parents in their relationships with the school administration. Each year, PURE provides direct assistance or referrals to hundreds of parents and local school council (LSC) members calling our hotline for help and information. PURE provides informative and empowering workshops for LSCs in all areas of their responsibility. PURE also offers a variety of parent workshops and develops new workshops to meet parents expressed needs. PURE publishes four newsletters to keep parents, LSC members, and other school leaders informed of current educational changes and issues. PURE works actively to focus attention on the parents’ perspective in any discussion of critical school problems through such means as press conferences, public testimony, and editorials. Some of PURE’s recent accomplishments and honors include: With a staff of four presenting 2,220 workshops with a total attendance of over 30,000 between 1996-2005. About half of those workshops were presented in Spanish. Last year alone we attended 370 meetings in 64 schools for individual advocacy, discipline and IEP hearings, and other issues. This work has helped dozens of students get back into school and improved services to special education students. Filing a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights which led to major improvements in the fairness and educational soundness of the Chicago Public Schools (CPS) student promotion policy in 2000. For example, the policy’s segregated Academic Preparatory Centers for eighth graders unable to “pass” the Iowa test have been shut down and the programs moved into high schools. Recent reports show that the eighth grade graduation rate of the students in the programs has doubled and the one-year drop out rate has decreased from 21 percent to 16 percent. Creating a national model for successful public school parent advocacy work cited in the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development’s November 2003 Educational Leadership magazine, national parent involvement expert Anne Henderson’s book, The Case for Parent Leadership, and as a case study at the November 2004 national conference of the Applied Research Center of the University of California, Berkeley. Winning a 2003 Ford Foundation Leadership for a Changing World (LCW) award, one of 17 awardees selected from a pool of more than 1,300 nominations representing individuals and leadership teams that are tackling some of the nation’s most entrenched social problems. While there are other groups working to improve public schools, PURE has a special role in focusing on issues from the parents’ point of view. PURE’s Board of Directors, membership of nearly 800, staff, and constituency are multiracial, multi-cultural, and economically diverse.|
|Catalyst Chicago is an independent newsmagazine created in 1990 to document, analyze and support school-improvement efforts in the Chicago Public Schools. It is published by the Community Renewal Society (CRS), a nonprofit organization founded in 1882 that works to create racially and economically just communities. CRS also publishes The Chicago Reporter, an award-winning newsletter created in 1972 to investigate issues of race and poverty. MISSION Through authoritative reporting and analysis, Catalyst Chicago challenges and serves as a resource for the city’s education community in its efforts to meet the educational needs of all children. It does this in part by: Analyzing in depth new education policies, legislation and programs and reporting on their affects over time. Identifying areas where improvement is needed Showing the reality of school and community life and how improvement happens or is undermined. Reporting on examples of progress, taking care to identify the how as well as the what. Seeking out and amplifying the voices of people who have critical insight but rarely get heard. Gathering and analyzing performance, operations and financial data. Reflecting the full variety of opinions on any given issue. Couching news in relevant research and historical and national contexts. Providing data and identifying resources that communities can use to improve their schools. Disseminating news and analysis in formats tailored to the individual needs of the wide variety of individuals involved in or concerned about school improvement.|