Policy Advocacy & Research

The policy, advocacy and research unit of FPWA executes a focused policy agenda aimed at building a city of equal opportunity that strengthens vulnerable New Yorkers. 

Our work is guided by three pillars:

    Advocating for policy changes that improve the lives of millions of New Yorkers.
    Strengthening the capacity of the human services sector to better meet the needs of the communities they serve.
    Ensuring targeted financial support to help thousands of New Yorkers meet basic needs.

We work closely with our network of member agencies, faith partners, coalitions, allies, and strategic collaborations to influence policy, legislation, and budget outcomes to address the needs of struggling New Yorkers. We engage with policymakers at the city, state and federal level to effect systemic change that positively impacts children, families, and individuals across generations.  We issue action alerts, policy briefs, research reports, and advocacy agendas to help shape the opinions of the public, the media, and decision makers as well as to mobilize our member agencies, faith partners and allies.  We coordinate policy forums, advocacy actions, and campaigns to provide opportunities for these organizations and the communities they serve to educate decision makers on solutions to address economic inequity. 

Our policy/advocacy work is unique because it is formed by our team of policy experts and supported by member agencies, faith partners, and community members.

Recent Policy Brief






Trump’s budget proposal puts New York City’s older adults at risk by cutting the Department for the Aging’s (DFTA) $77.4 million in federal funding by more than a third, and by further decimating direct federal assistance, such as housing, heating and food assistance, and healthcare.

Recent Reports

Ending the Poverty to Prison Pipeline Report
If you are poor in New York City – especially if you are a low-income person of color – there’s an increased likelihood that you will be drawn into the criminal justice system. And once justice-involved, climbing out of poverty becomes harder. A mechanism is already in place, however, that can help interrupt this pipeline –human service organizations.

The new report outlines steps New York City must take to address the cycle of poverty and criminalization of low-income New Yorkers and the critical role that those organizations already providing services to these individuals, families and communities could play.


FPWA Federal Funds Tracker Introductory Report

The FPWA Federal Funds Tracker reveals that, following a decade of austerity and misplaced priorities, all federal grants to New York City have fallen by nearly $2 billion since FY 2010 after adjusting for inflation. This includes more than $300 million in social service grants, as well as funding for education, transportation, and environmental protection. By tracking grants for individual agencies, including the Administration of Children’s Services, the Department of Social Services, the Department of Youth and Community Development, and the Department for the Aging, the Federal Funds Tracker shines a light on the nearly $75 million lost in funding to, among others, effective poverty fighting tools, programs to support the needs of our children and older adults, and grants to assist New Yorkers who cannot meet their basic needs.

With One Voice
The culmination of a year-long project in partnership with our member organizations to develop a shared vision for advancing economic equity in New York City. We examined the systems that maintain economic inequity, policy advancements made over the past four years that move New York City towards equity, and key areas where transformational policy change still is required to build an economically equitable city.


Undervalued & UnderpaidUndervalued & Underpaid Workforce Report Cover
FPWA, the Human Services Council and the Fiscal Policy Institute co-authored a newly released workforce report highlighting how New York State shortchanges nonprofit human services providers and their workforce.