green_square Policy, Advocacy & Research

FPWA's Statement on Government Budget Cuts to Essential Human Services:


The Federation of Protestant Welfare Agencies (FPWA) is deeply disturbed about the impact of continuing budget cuts to vital services for New York’s struggling families, including youth programs, services to seniors and individuals with HIV/AIDS. We understand that the multiple rounds of budget cuts were part of the New York State and City’s efforts to responsibly address a worsening economy and growing budget deficits. Unfortunately, government cuts disproportionately impacts children and families who are increasingly vulnerable during tight fiscal times.

Though we understand the challenges faced by the state in these difficult economic times, these are also the times when people are without jobs, run out of unemployment, are at the verge of losing their homes, and have to turn to essential services to feed their families, clothe their children, pay for heat and medicine and other life needs. It is for these reasons that FPWA adamantly opposes any further reductions in funding for essential human services, which would have the most devastating impact on those already in greatest need.

FPWA hosts NYS Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic and Asian Legislative Caucus Press Conference

On Monday, January 7, 2013, FPWA opened its doors to Caucus members for their press conference to announce their Legislative and Budget Priorities for the 2013 Session. We have been fortunate over the years to have the Caucus’ support on several issues concerning the most vulnerable residents of our city and state, and we are eager to work with its members and all members of the Legislature to achieve economic, health and education security for all New Yorkers. Visit the Caucus’ website for more info about their priorities for the 2013 Session.

Foster Parents in NeedFPWA’s report Foster Parents in Need, Strategies to Improve Foster Parent Training, Support and Retention looks at serious shortcomings with foster parent training, support and retention, and highlights best practices by NYC foster care agencies that provide better training and support for foster parents in their programs.

GUPIFPWA’s report Guilty Until Proven Innocent:Sanctions, Agency Error, and Financial Punishment within New York State's Welfare System explores the way the welfare sanction process is structured and administered in New York State and the impact it has on households that turn to welfare in a time of need.

Shoring up the Social Safety Net for Today's hard Times
FPWA’s report The State of NY's Social Safety Net for Today's Hard Times revealed a weakened social safety net and barriers to access to services for the unemployed and impoverished. Click here to read the report.

As a result of our findings, FPWA has launched a campaign to ensure access to public assistance programs, reform the welfare sanctioning system and expand access to education and training for low-income people. Click here to learn more about this campaign

2011 U.S. Census Data for New York City:

  • For 2011, the New York City poverty rate was 21% with 1.695 million residents living in poverty
  • The child poverty rate in the city is at 30% with nearly 1 in 3 children living in poverty in 2011
  • The 2011 federal poverty threshold for a family of three was $18,123
For more visit the Census Bureau online

HIV and Workforce IssuesFPWA convened a forum on the employment and vocational needs of persons living with HIV/AIDS, followed by a panel discussion.

Post forum, FPWA coordinated the HIV and Workforce workgroup which was formed as a result of the forum. FPWA also attend the forum in Washington, DC co-sponsored by the National Working Positive Coalition on this issue.

Advocating for Disconnected Youth and Youth Aging out of Foster CareThere is a crisis in New York City as close to 200,000 youth, predominantly youth of color, are neither in school nor in the workforce and thus are “disconnected.” FPWA is a leading voice in advocating for programs and policies to support disconnected youth, with a particular focus on youth aging out of foster care. We have developed a variety of publications and instituted an array of campaigns to address this critical issue. Please click on the links below to learn more about FPWA’s essential work on disconnected youth and youth aging out of foster care.

Disconnected Youth Forums

Disconnected Youth Advocacy Issues

  • Youth Education and Employment Campaign pdf (317866 bytes) : Foster Care Higher Education Scholarship bill and Youth EITC bill
  • FPWA initiated a Youth Aging Out of Foster Care work group to develop strategies for improving the experiences and outcomes for these youth. We also held a forum on to shed light on jobs and housing issues for youth aging out of care. Click here for Conference Agenda Part 1 pdf (174809 bytes)

FPWA's Recent Advocacy Successes

  • Pushed New York City to restore funding for early childhood education and afterschool programs.
  • Restored funding for senior centers which prevented the closure of 110 New York City centers.
  • Successfully advocated for New York State to implement the Kinship Guardianship Assistance Program (KinGAP) that enables foster children to achieve permanent placements with related foster parents by providing financial and other supports to the relative guardian.
  • Click here for FPWA 2012-13 State Budget Agenda Outcomes Report
  • Click here for FPWA 2012-2013 City Budget Agenda Outcomes Report

Bich Ha PhamBich Ha Pham, Director of Policy, Advocacy and Research

How Does Your Agency Get involved in Policy Work?


FPWA's substantial team of expert policy analysts work closely with our member agencies and in numerous strategic collaborations to influence budget and legislative outcomes that positively impact human services organizations and the children, families and individuals they serve.

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Policy, Advocacy & Research pdf (121513 bytes)