Tag Archives: public policy

A Perspective on Gender and Racial Equity: Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson Hearings

Supreme Court Nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson
Supreme Court Nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson

Photo credit: AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

By Sonia Banks, Ph.D.
Senior Vice President, Organizational Culture and Talent Development

The nation was mesmerized in recent days by the Senate confirmation hearings of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, President Biden’s first nominee to the United State Supreme Court.

The importance of the Court to American life cannot be overstated — its decisions impact our government, our economy, our family lives. If confirmed, Judge Jackson would make history as the first Black woman to sit on the Court, a long-overdue breakthrough that is anxiously awaited by many.

But the hearings themselves have been an embarrassing, infuriating chapter in this history-making story unfolding during Women’s Herstory Month. Continue reading

On International Women’s Day, #ChooseToChallenge Ourselves with Bold Change

By Traci Donnelly, Chief Executive Officer

Trina (with son Terrell) was one of many women who faced impossible choices when the COVID-19 pandemic exposed how few supports women have.

Incremental change is no longer an option for those who seek to improve the lives of marginalized populations — and if we’re to be honest with ourselves, it never was. After a year of profound loss and social upheaval, the inequalities and deep, historic injustices we’ve been content to just live with have never stood out so dramatically.

This can be painful, but it is also hopeful: It is in this new climate of painful change that opportunities for progress have emerged. Against this backdrop, we mark International Women’s Day 2021 with the theme #ChooseToChallenge. Continue reading

Thank You, Sesame Street, for Tackling Homelessness

Lily, the homeless character in Sesame Street

Now, How to Go from Here

By Traci Donnelly, Chief Executive Officer

Lily, the homeless character in Sesame StreetSesame Street enjoys a well-earned reputation as a trailblazer not only in children’s television, but also in our society at large. From its portrayal and integration of BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, (and) People of Color) characters in the 1970s to its more recent additions of characters with autism or incarcerated parents, it has a history of changing hearts and minds — as well as public policy. The iconic show is well on its way to doing just that for people experiencing homelessness, through the character of Lily, a 7-year-old girl whose family has lost their apartment and is living with friends, moving from home to home. Here are some things we hope Lily’s portrayal goes on to include. Continue reading

The Day After the Kavanaugh Hearings, at a Place that Works with Sexual Assault Survivors

Christine Blasey Ford

Christine Blasey FordBy Traci Donnelly
Chief Executive Officer

Revised October 3, 2018. This blog post has produced a very positive response and healthy debate and conversations. In respect for the opinions expressed by a few, we have revised some of the language — though not the essence — of this blog post. The Child Center of NY firmly believes that every voice deserves to be heard.

Women and men were in tears and visibly upset at work yesterday. Some may have been survivors of sexual assault themselves; and many of them, especially clinicians in our behavioral health division, have worked with clients who came to The Child Center for help dealing with what we know are the effects — long-term and short-term — of any sexual assault.

We were huddled around phones and computers, watching with astonishment and disbelief at the Kavanaugh hearings, at the questioning of Christine Blasey Ford, Ph.D., and Judge Brett Kavanaugh. Our disbelief was grounded in our professional knowledge of how survivors of sexual assault should be treated, and this was not the way.

Continue reading

On the Separation of Migrant Families at the Southern Border

By Traci Donnelly
Chief Executive Officer

A famous quote, often attributed to Mahatma Gandhi, states that a nation’s greatness is measured by how it treats its most vulnerable members. Children depend entirely on others and are therefore the most vulnerable among us. Living up to our responsibility to our children is our most sacred obligation. Continue reading

Love, Inside and Out

By Tina Reynolds, MSW
Project Director, A Vision for Tele-Visiting

When we picture families paying tribute to Mom on Mother’s Day, we don’t tend to envision the celebration in a prison. But that scenario is a reality for many American children, and an out-of-reach dream for others. Continue reading

This Women’s History Month, Time’s Up on More than You Think

The author’s grandmother, Eleanor, who grew up without a mom present — and was the author’s biggest influence.

By Traci Donnelly
Chief Executive Officer

Women’s History Month is one of those observances that everyone knows about every year, but few people take notice. While that should never be the case, it is especially important that this is not one of those years. Continue reading

Trump’s Opioid Declaration: Spotlighting the Crisis, But Also the Stigma

Trump declares the opioid epidemic a public health emergency

Trump declares the opioid epidemic a public health emergencyBy Elaine Schechtel
Director, Asian Outreach Substance Abuse Program

Drug overdoses, fueled by opioids, are the leading cause of accidental death for working-age Americans, killing more than 64,000 last year, and the rate of deaths continues to increase. So it’s good, and about time, that our president declared the opioid epidemic a national public health emergency last week. I’m in favor of any move that gets opioid addiction, and substance abuse in general, in the news and on people’s minds. But there were two missed opportunities in the declaration: one, which is rightfully getting a lot of press, is that the announcement did not include any requests for funding; and the other is the way Trump chose to frame the issue of addiction — as a moral failing and weakness of will power, instead of the disease that it is. Continue reading


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