NY Appleseed has an impressive history of effecting structural change to benefit immigrant, minority, and low-income residents of the New York City and New York State…
Access to the New York Earned Income Tax Credit
Since 2010 NY Appleseed and Morrison & Foerster have been working to ensure that the New York State Earned Income Tax Credit program works as intended for people who earn their income in cash. As part of that effort New York Appleseed submitted sample guidance on how to document cash income to the New York State Department of Taxation & Finance. Finally in 2012, the Department incorporated our suggestions into official guidance. The Department’s new guidance will assist hairdressers, house cleaners, and other cash earners receive the funds to which they are entitled. This work began with the publication of our 2010 report on the topic produced with White & Case.
In the wake of the credit crisis and with support from the ACE Rule of Law Fund and the New York State Courts Access to Justice program, we launched an innovative volunteer lawyer pilot project providing legal advice and assistance to consumer-debt defendants first in the Kings County Civil Court and then in Queens County Civil Court. The total number of defendants served by projects modeled on our pilot reached 20,000 in 2015.
At the same time, with pro bono partner Jones Day, we prepared an in-depth report on barriers to justice in the civil court system for these defendants. Working off of the report’s recommendations, New York Appleseed and Arnold & Porter then conducted extensive research on the legal, practical and technological issues the city faced in implementing a new law requiring that process servers carry GPS devices to document their locations when serving summonses and complaints. The research culminated in an advocacy briefing with recommendations for implementing the new law.
New York City taxi drivers work 60 to 70 hours a week and serve over half a million riders each day, yet the majority are members of the working poor. New York Appleseed worked with Arent Fox to assist the New York Taxi Workers’ Alliance in persuading the NYC Taxi & Limousine Commission to approve a permanent source of funds for a Health & Disability Fund for drivers in 2012.
With Fonkoze, Haiti’s largest alternative bank for poor residents, New York Appleseed developed and distributed thousands of financial literacy materials in Haitian-Creole and led two trainings for over 150 community leaders in 2008 and 2009.
In 2004 and 2005 Appleseed marshaled over 40 volunteer professionals to work with the city’s Department of Education (DOE) to increase the quantity and quality of teacher applicants and to improve the effectiveness of the recruitment process. These professionals came from diverse backgrounds including consulting, marketing, advertising, market research, technology, Web site design and production, educational technology, accounting, law, real estate, human resources and management training and contributed over $11 million worth of time or services. Mayor Bloomberg called the project the “most ambitious and comprehensive teacher recruitment campaign in New York City’s history.”
Over the course of the project, Appleseed and its volunteers worked with DOE to facilitate:
- The generation of new marketing materials including a recruitment video, a recruitment CD, brochures, collateral materials and promotional materials for the DOE’s Division of Human Resources Career Fairs;
- Ad Council’s sponsorship of the ad campaign allowing DOE to reach prospective teachers through the Internet, e-mail, radio, television and newspaper;
- The creation of an integrated and comprehensive message for use in recruitment, advertising, collateral materials and the new teacher recruitment Web site.
SEE one of the advertisements.
SEE the advertisements in the press release.
READ the New York Times article.