Affirmative advocacy, sometimes called “broad-based advocacy,” is advocacy that is proactive rather than defensive, often intends to benefit a group instead of just one client, and recognizes that even individual cases can have a major impact.
Strategies featured in these stories include not only litigation but also other problem-solving efforts—e.g., media campaigns on behalf of a cause, lobbying efforts to pass innovative legislation, and successful negotiations of settlements. If you have an advocacy story to share, please contact Amanda Moore.
by Amy Eppler-Epstein, Alexis Smith, Deborah Witkin, & Anne Louise Blanchard ✯
Katie misses a month of high school because her family has been evicted. While her family struggles to find other housing, she is staying on the floors or couches of different friends and relatives each night.
Jorge has been sleepy and lethargic in his second-grade class because he has been going to bed hungry at night. Even though Jorge’s father has been working over 50 hours a week, the father’s employer keeps saying the father will get paid soon. Jorge’s father knows this is wrong, but he is afraid to complain due to his undocumented status.
Sam has not been able to complete his sixth-grade homework or focus on his classes in school. Every day when he gets home from school, he has to assess whether his father is in “one of his moods” and may start hitting Sam’s mother.
Keisha has missed four days of third grade this month because her asthma flared up due to the rodent infestation in her apartment.
Sandra missed her eleventh-grade classes when she had to go to the emergency room. She started having alarming symptoms from her diabetes when her insulin prescription ran out. She is supposed to be covered by the state’s health plan for low-income children, but at the pharmacy she found out that her state insurance had inexplicably been terminated.
Children’s performance in school can be directly affected by problems in their homes or in other parts of their lives. Low-income families regularly face crises relating to fundamental needs such as food, housing, freedom from domestic violence, health, and employment. Family problems such as these can be distracting, traumatic, or even devastating to children. In the face of such troubles, how is a child supposed to succeed in school?... (Read more ➢)