The Inside Scoop on Issues and Policies
by Arthur I. Blaustein
Policy and Issues Analysis
This article lists organizations
that provide intelligent, up-to-date information on issues and policies
that may be of interest to you.
Alliance for Retired Americans
by a coalition of unions and community groups, Alliance for Retired
Americans focuses on issues relevant to retired people, including
universal health care coverage, protecting Social Security, and gaining a
prescription drug beneﬁt for Medicare users. Established in 2001.
16th Street NW, Suite 520
American Psychological Association (APA)
the largest membership of psychologists in the world, APA works to advance
the science of psychology as a beneﬁt to human welfare. Established
First Street NE
Campaign for America's Future
for America's Future seeks to further a progressive agenda that protects
the economic and social rights of all citizens in the face of corporate
hegemony. Established in 1996.
Connecticut Avenue NW, Suite 205
Campus Outreach Opportunity League (COOL)
encourages college students to embrace activism, get involved in their
communities, and become a force for social change. Established in 1984.
Temple Place, Suite 401
Center for Community Change (CCC)
a belief that poor people must lead the effort to eliminate poverty, CCC
helps local organizations build their capacity to direct the futures of
their communities. CCC provides support in developing strong community
leadership, providing critical services, building homes, and developing
business. In addition to working at a grass-roots level, CCC has been
involved in passing national legislation, including the Community
Reinvestment Act and the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act, both of which
encourage lending in low-income and minority communities. Established in
Wisconsin Avenue NW
Center for Democratic Renewal (CDR)
acts as a national hub for information on hate-group activity and
violence. An outgrowth of the National Anti-Klan Network, which was the
ﬁrst multiracial group established to expose and counter hate-group
activity, CDR provides an analytical perspective on the social, political,
and criminal aspects of hate crimes and hate groups. Through research,
public education, leadership training, crisis intervention, community
organizing, and technical assistance, CDR has worked with hundreds of
communities across the United States to help combat racism, anti-Semitism,
religious intolerance, and homophobia. In 2000, CDR formed the Southern
Coalition Against Racism and Bigotry (SCARAB), a coalition of southern
research and advocacy organizations concerned with racism in the South.
Established in 1979.
Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP)
is a research and analysis organization working on public policy issues
affecting low- and moderate-income populations. CBPP crunches data and
produces analyses meant to be accessible and useful to lawmakers, other
nonproﬁts, and the media. Established in 1981.
First Street NE, Suite 510
Citizens for Tax Justice (CTJ)
advocates for fair tax laws for ordinary citizens. They support the
closing of tax loopholes for corporations and the wealthy, reducing the
federal debt, and adequately funding important government programs.
Established in 1979.
L Street NW
Coalition on Human Needs (CHN)
is an alliance of organizations working together to promote adequate
funding of social services and to ensure that the interests of low-income
and vulnerable populations are represented in the national policy debate.
Established in 1981.
Connecticut Avenue NW, Suite 910
Corporation for Supportive Housing (CSH)
helps local organizations create supported housing options for people in
need and at risk for homelessness, particularly those coping with extreme
poverty, mental and/or physical illness, or addiction. Established in
Broadway, Seventeenth ﬂoor
York, NY 10004
986-2966 ext. 500
corporations accountable, CorpWatch (formerly known as the Transnational
Resource and Action Center) works against corporate-led globalization
through education and activism. Past efforts have included playing a role
in pressuring Nike to improve the conditions in its overseas sweatshops,
and co-producing radio broadcasts from the World Trade Organization
meeting and protests in Seattle. A current priority is to redeﬁne
the global warming issue as a question of human rights and environmental
justice. Established in 1997.
Francisco, CA 94129
Disability Rights Advocates (DRA)
works to protect the rights of people with disabilities through research,
education, and legal advocacy. Established in 1993.
15th Street, Suite 303
Something provides guidance, resources, support, and encouragement to
young people working to better their schools, communities, and country.
Established in 1993.
West 55th Street, Eighth ﬂoor
York, NY 10019
Economic Policy Institute (EPI)
works to include the concerns of middle-income workers in the national
discussion on economic policy. EPI provides research and analysis on
issues such as trends in wages, incomes, and prices; part-time work;
welfare reform; labor market problems; the consumer price index; health
care; education; Social Security; Medicare; trade and global ﬁnance;
jobs and the environment; urban sprawl; and the health of the
manufacturing sector, among other areas. Established in 1986.
L Street NW, Suite 1200
USA is a grass-roots organization working at the local, state, and
national level to achieve high-quality, affordable health care for all
Americans. Issues of concern include Medicaid, Medicare, managed care,
children's health, the uninsured, and communities of color. Established in
G Street NW
Family Violence Prevention Fund (FVPF)
works to educate legal and health-care professionals, as well as the
public, on the prevalence and effects of domestic violence, and to assist
those whose lives are affected by abuse. Established in 1980.
Rhode Island Street, Suite 304
Francisco, CA 94103-5133
Food Research and Action Center (FRAC)
works to reduce hunger in America through research, advocacy, education,
and local program support. Established in 1970.
Connecticut Avenue NW, Suite 540
Housing Assistance Council (HAC)
helps rural communities build affordable housing through loans, technical
assistance, training, and education. Established in 1971.
Vermont Avenue NW, Suite 606
Institute on Race and Poverty (IRP)
works to increase dialogue and ﬁnd solutions for communities
constrained by the dual barriers of race and poverty. To that end, the
institute seeks to understand race-related poverty and to improve
conditions for low-income communities of color through research, advocacy,
litigation, and media attention. Established in 1993.
of Minnesota Law School, 415 Law Center
19th Avenue South
League of Women Voters of America (LWV)
outgrowth of the suffragist movement, LWV is a nonpartisan grass-roots
organization that encourages citizens to be involved and informed in the
shaping of public policy. Established in 1920.
M Street NW, Suite 1000
NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF)
by Thurgood Marshall, LDF has been a pioneer in public interest law
focusing on education, employment, criminal justice, voting rights,
housing, health care, and environmental justice issues as they relate to
the African American community. Established in 1940.
York, NY 10013
National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC)
provides services and technical assistance to nonproﬁt community,
migrant, homeless, and other health-care centers across the United States.
Established in 1970.
New Hampshire Avenue NW, Suite 122
National Center for Bicycling and Walking (NCBW)
(founded as the Bicycle Federation of America) works to make America a
better and safer place to walk and bicycle. NCBW presents informational
resources and outlines actions that can be taken to improve the
environment for bicycling and walking. They also maintain an Internet
Support Center and organize a biennial ProBike/ProWalk Conference.
Established in 1977.
21st Street NW, Suite 200
National Congress for Community Economic Development (NCCED)
is the trade association and advocate for the more than 3,600 community
development corporations (CDCs) across the country. CDCs produce
affordable housing and create jobs through business and commercial
development activities and job training. They also support the growth of
light industry and small business, and they encourage affordable housing
through new construction and rehabilitation projects. CDCs are owned and
controlled by the residents affected by their programs. NCCED serves the
industry through public policy research and education, newsletters, other
publications, training, conferences, specialized technical assistance, and
fund-raising. Established in 1970.
15th Street NW, Suite 325
National Council of Churches (NCC)
represents 140,000 Protestant, Anglican, and Orthodox congregations across
the United States working together to address issues ranging from peace
and justice to poverty, racism, the environment, family, and education.
Established in 1950.
Riverside Drive, Suite 880
York, NY 10115
National Economic Development and Law Center (NEDLC)
is a legal and planning resource center fostering economic expansion and
social empowerment in low-income communities. NEDLC provides technical
assistance, training, research, advocacy, policy formulation, model
project development, publishing, and legal services to community groups.
Established in 1969.
Broadway, Suite 815
National Education Association (NEA)
works at the local, state, and national levels to improve the quality of
teaching and learning in America's public schools. Established in 1857.
16th Street NW
National Energy Assistance Directors' Association (NEADA)
represents the state and tribal directors of the Low-Income Home Energy
Assistance Program (LIHEAP), which helps almost ﬁve million
low-income households across the country manage their heating and cooling
needs. Established in 1990.
M Street NW, Suite 800
National Head Start Association (NHSA)
is a membership organization supporting 2,400 local Head Start programs
across the country (which serve almost one million children nationwide).
Head Start is a comprehensive child development program serving low-income
children from birth to age 5. Established in 1965.
National Neighborhood Coalition (NNC)
serves as an information center, networking resource, and advocate in
Washington, DC for neighborhoods and community-based organizations across
the country. Established in 1979.
15th Street NW, Suite 325
Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC)
won the passage of the Clean Water Act in 1971 and has been working to
ensure a clean and safe environment ever since. With the support of more
than half a million members, NRDC works on a wide range of green issues,
including the protection of our air, water, wetlands, green spaces, and
natural resources; investment in alternative energy sources; and research
into environmental health threats. Established in 1970.
West 20th Street, Eleventh ﬂoor
York, NY 10011
Fund contributes money to a wide range of innovative programs-scientiﬁc
research to media advocacy, lobbying, grass-roots organizing, and
education-working toward goals of peace, demilitarization, and nuclear
disarmament. Established in 1981.
Mason Center, Building B, Suite 330
Francisco, CA 94123
is a national nonproﬁt research, communications, capacity-building,
and advocacy organization that seeks to enlarge the sphere of inﬂuence
that affects policy so that community-based organizations are central to
the search for solutions. PolicyLink's work is rooted in partnerships with
community-building practitioners, national organizations, and others
committed to advancing economic and social equity. Established in 1999.
Population Action International (PAI)
works to provide girls and women around the world with access to family
planning and related health services. PAI seeks to inﬂuence U.S.
and international policy on population issues and to establish connections
between reproductive health, population growth, development, and the
environment. Established in 1965.
19th Street NW, Second ﬂoor
Public Education Network (PEN)
is an association of local education funds working toward public school
reform in low-income communities across the country. PEN's goal is to
ensure that every child has access to high-quality public education. To
that end, the network advocates for a number of issues, including changes
in school funding, reevaluation of curriculum and assessment practices,
ensuring authority at the school level, ensuring teacher quality at every
school, and engaging communities with their local schools. Established in
Thirteenth Street NW, Suite 900 North
national alliance of progressive and grass-roots organizations, U.S.
Action seeks to build political muscle behind progressive values and
issues. Established in 1999.
G Street NW, Tenth ﬂoor
World Wildlife Fund (WWF)
works to protect endangered species and endangered spaces through a wide
range of methods, from strengthening local parks to inﬂuencing
global environmental policies. Established in 1961.
24th Street NW
Make a Difference, Your Guide to
Volunteering and Community Service. Copyright © 2002 by Arthur I.
Blaustein. Excerpted by arrangement with Heyday Books. $10.95. Available in
local bookstores or click here.