For over 40 years, the Shriver Center has improved lives through the development of innovative and effective programs and policies that advance justice and opportunity. Our work has been recognized by prominent foundations across the country, including the MacArthur Foundation, which honored us with its 2010 MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions. Here is a list of some our recent accomplishments.
- Ensuring a safety net for poor families. The Shriver Center led a successful effort to greatly expand access to Illinois' Temporary Aid to Needy Families cash assistance program. This model legislation changed eligibility rules and front-end practices, making the program more responsive to increased need created by the recession.
- Helping homeowners to avoid foreclosure. We advanced legislation to ensure that homeowners at risk of foreclosure have a real chance to use loan modification programs before losing their homes. We also advanced laws to protect tenants living in foreclosed properties so that they have crucial foreclosure information, adequate time to move, and access to their security deposits.
- Improving access to health care. We conceived, carried through, and continue to protect the FamilyCare campaign, which expanded Illinois residents' eligibility for Medicaid and provided health care coverage for 400,000 working parents.
- Protecting victims of domestic violence. We created the Safe Homes Initiative, which protects the housing rights of survivors of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking. Through this initiative, laws were changed to protect survivors from threatened evictions and to allow survivors to end rental leases early when threatened with violence.
- Building the capacity of the nation's equal justice providers. The Shriver Center has shared legal strategies and best practices in 400+ issues of Clearinghouse Review: Journal of Poverty Law and Policy and trained thousands of legal aid advocates nationwide. Collectively, our communications and training programs provide the full range of tools that advocates need to ensure justice for their clients.