Staff Updates

August 5, 2019 Announcing essay and video contest Calling all high school students! Our annual essay contest is now open, and we have an exciting change to announce. In addition to essays, we are now accepting short (2-3 minute) videos as well. Prizes of $750 will be awarded for the top essay and the top video. Students are…

Read more Washington E-Memo

July 2, 2019 Restoring Pell Grants to incarcerated students In 1994, Congress passed the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, also known as the crime bill, in an attempt to be tough on crime. The bill included an amendment to ban Pell Grants for incarcerated students. As a result the number of education programs within…

Read more Washington E-Memo

Shutdown ends – for now On January 25, portions of the federal government that had been without funding for 35 days reopened under a continuing resolution through February 15. The deal came one day after a proposal to pair border wall funding with protections for DACA and TPS recipients failed in the Senate. The bill would have…

Read more Washington E-Memo

January 7, 2019 Looking back at 2018 and ahead to 2019 As we begin 2019, we are grateful for the advocacy work that we have been able to do together with you over the past year. We celebrated reforms to our criminal justice system, legislation on the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the renewal of…

Read more Washington E-Memo

Help us pass criminal justice reforms! President Donald Trump recently voiced his support for a bipartisan criminal justice bill, a revised First Step Act that would provide sentencing and prison reforms. The First Step Act would curb mandatory minimums for many low-level drug crimes, providing judges with more discretion over individual cases. The bill also aims to eliminate the…

Read more Washington E-Memo

  Central American migrant caravan A caravan of about 7,000 Central American migrants entered Mexico in mid-October. Though this caravan is unusually large, traveling together is common as migrants are less likely to be victims of violence in a bigger group. Most are fleeing violence and poverty in their home communities. As with previous caravans, many people…

Read more Washington E-Memo

Leading us in right paths: U.S.-Nigeria policy The U.S. response to Nigeria, as it faces multi-layered violent conflicts and armed actors threatening the nation’s unity, has primarily been to provide military assistance. This approach is counterproductive and has spawned additional violence. This issue of the Washington Memo provides an overview of U.S.-Nigeria policy and suggests strategies to…

Read more Washington E-Memo