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Improving Contraceptive Access

August 1, 2023

Lessons learned from The Right Time, an initiative to promote access to comprehensive family planning services for all Missourians.

Practical Guidance: What Nonprofits Need to Know About Lobbying in Missouri

January 8, 2023

Bolder Advocacy's Practical Guidance – What Nonprofits Need to Know About Lobbying state law resource series is designed to help nonprofits determine if lobbying rules in their state might apply to their state or local work, and if they do, how best to navigate them!Each Guide Includes:Summary of lobbyist registration and reporting triggers in the stateKey critical takeaways for nonprofit organizationsFAQs – giving practical perspective on how to interact with the state rulesCase study for a hypothetical small student voting rights organizationList of helpful additional resourcesWho are these Guides For?Nonprofit Advocacy Organizations: Leaders and staff of nonprofit organizations that work on (or are thinking about working on) advocacy initiatives at the state or local levelLawyers: Lawyers and compliance professionals interested in working with nonprofit advocacy organizations doing state and local level workFunders: Funding organizations working to ensure strong organizational capacity and infrastructure for the groups they fund doing advocacy work at the state and local level

Clean Jobs Midwest 2022 Report

December 12, 2022

Clean Jobs Midwest is an annual report based on survey data on clean energy employment in 12 Midwestern states.These states include Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. The Midwest's clean energy industry employed 714,323 people in sectors including renewable energy generation, energy efficiency, advanced transportation, grid and storage, and clean fuels at the end of 2021. 

Collaborative Outcomes from the Youth Justice and Employment Community of Practice

October 18, 2022

Established in mid-2021, the Youth Justice and Employment Community of Practice (CoP) is a partnership of the Annie E. Casey Foundation (AECF), the National Youth Employment Coalition (NYEC), and Pretrial Justice Institute (PJI) formed to improve outcomes for youth with justice involvement by increasing collaboration among local workforce and juvenile justice systems. The CoP began during the middle of COVID-19 at a time when counterparts in each jurisdiction were seeking to reestablish pandemic-disrupted communication and collaboration. CoP participants met monthly to share knowledge and expertise on topics of importance to both systems. Based on work from the CoP, participating cities and counties produced notable improvements in building relationships, expanding partnerships, and promoting investments that benefit justice-involved young people in their communities. This report documents successes and offers recommendations for others seeking to improve outcomes for these young people.

Addressing the root causes of gun violence with American Rescue Plan funds: Lessons from state and local governments

August 15, 2022

In June 2022, the most significant piece of gun violence prevention legislation in decades, the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, became law. Alongside several common-sense gun regulations, the law allocates $250 million for community-based violence prevention initiatives—a promising step toward promoting safety through non-carceral and community-centered approaches.This federal action is important, but it only scratches the surface of what can be done to keep communities safe from gun violence. From investing in youth employment programs to revitalizing vacant lots to improving the quality of neighborhood housing, a wealth of community-based safety interventions are proven to reduce violent crime—including gun violence—in the places most impacted by it, and tackle the conditions of inequality that allow violence to concentrate in the first place. But far too often, these community-based interventions are under-funded, particularly when compared to more punitive approaches.Luckily, another source of federal aid can fund community-based safety investments: the American Rescue Plan's (ARP) $350 billion in Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds. In addition to helping states and localities recover from the pandemic, the funds also provide local leaders with an unparalleled opportunity to address the public health crisis of gun violence.This research brief documents how state and local leaders are leveraging ARP funds to invest in non-carceral community-based safety initiatives; presents perspectives and case studies from leaders on-the-ground innovating on such strategies; and offers recommendations for how state and local leaders can maximize ARP funds to promote community safety prior to 2024 (when all funds must be obligated) and 2026 (when all funds must be spent). This is an unparalleled—and time-limited—window of opportunity, and states and localities should be thinking strategically right now about how to not only invest in proven strategies to reduce gun violence, but also promote life-affirming safety investments that support thriving communities.

Reimagining Public Safety in the City of St. Louis: A Vision for Change

April 20, 2022

This report outlines recommendations for a unilateral reimagining of public safety systems. It details guidance for redirecting police services to critical areas of public need and building a network of systems and services to support community needs and ensure measures of safety for the entire community.The recommendations are designed to address racial disparities and reduce the harm caused by the reliance on police. The report addresses gaps and inconsistencies in law enforcement policies, staffing and resourcing needs in the police department, and a need for improvement in both oversight and community resources. The recommendations are divided into suggestions to the Mayor's Office, the St. Louis Department of Public Safety, and guidance to the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department (SLMPD).

The Cost Per Shooting: St. Louis, Missouri

April 4, 2022

The true governmental cost of gun-violence to the City, County and State of St. Louis, MO.

Addressing Community Violence in the City of St. Louis: Existing Strategies, Gaps, and Funding Opportunities

February 17, 2022

In June 2021, the Missouri Foundation for Health contracted with the Giffords Community Violence Initiative team to synthesize the information currently known about the scope and nature of the community violence epidemic in the City of St. Louis and identify strategies that need to either be implemented or scaled up to address this crisis. In recognition of the fact that this work requires a significant infusion of resources, Giffords staff and partners have also mapped out local, state, and federal funding opportunities to support all of the recommendations made here.This report is intended to assist St. Louis leaders and community stakeholders in prioritizing—and funding—the most effective solutions for reducing violence as quickly as possible. Violence is the result of many complex systems and inequities, from segregation and disinvestment in communities of color, to grave disparities in the criminal legal system, among others. But until the immediate bloodshed is dramatically reduced, progress on any larger social issue in St. Louis will be more difficult, as violence is both a symptom and a cause of inequality. That is why, while we recognize the larger systems change work that absolutely must be done to address the inequities at the root of community violence, this report is focused primarily on concrete strategies and systems that can help reduce violence in the short term, and that must be woven into the fabric of broader systems change going forward. 

Six Strategies for Keeping Families Supported, Connected and Safe

February 14, 2022

In recent years, two concurrent factors have led to an increased focus on how child welfare leaders can work with partners to support families to stay together: the 2018 passage of the Family First Prevention Services Act, which created new approaches to a child welfare funding stream to prevent the need for foster care, and a heightened awareness of how discriminatory policies and practices within child welfare lead to unnecessary disruption and separation of families of color.Many states are expanding their efforts to support families and creating new partnerships to fund those efforts. The Annie E. Casey Foundation profiled six innovative efforts across the country. While the focus and stage of development of these partnerships vary, six strategies emerged as important to successful and effective coordination of resources to prevent system involvement and keep families supported, connected and safe.

Greater Kansas City Community Foundation 2020 Annual Report

August 6, 2021

In an unprecedented year, philanthropists responded to a variety of needs and causes. Our 2020 annual report is now available and details how individuals, families and companies gave back last year.

Representation for Some: The Discriminatory Nature of Limiting Representation to Adult Citizens

July 29, 2021

Every 10 years, political districts at all levels of government are redrawn to make sure they are equal in population as required by the U.S. Constitution.1 Currently every state apportions representatives and draws congressional and state legislative districts on the basis of a state's total population.2 That is, when districts are drawn, all people living in the state, including children and noncitizens, are counted for the purposes of representation.However, some Republican political operatives and elected officials aim to unsettle this long-standing prac[1]tice by excluding children and noncitizens from the popu[1]lation figures used to draw state legislative districts.3 Rather than count everyone, states would draw districts based only on the adult citizen population.Making such a break with current practice and prece[1]dent would be of dubious legality and would leave states vulnerable to a host of legal challenges. It also would have major practical implications for redistricting. This study looks at what such a change would mean for representa[1]tion and the allocation of political power in the United States by focusing on its impact three demographically distinct states: Texas, Georgia, and Missouri.

The Power and Problem of Criminal Justice Data: A Twenty-State Review

June 30, 2021

Despite accounting for a substantial portion of local, state, and federal budgets, our criminal justice institutions are among the least measured systems in our country. In an effort to bring transparency to this sector, MFJ has collected, standardized, and made public 20 states' worth of criminal justice data.The purpose of this report is to share what we have learned through this effort, including: (a) what we cannot see when data are missing, and (b) the value that data can provide when they are available and comparable. In particular, we identify patterns around the following:There is a substantial lack of data around pretrial detention and release decision-making, as well as individual demographics (particularly indigence).New data privacy laws are also making it needlessly difficult to obtain certain data. This poses challenges to understanding how individuals experience the system in cases that do not result in conviction.There is great variation in how counties dispose of and sentence nonviolent cases; how financial obligations are imposed on individuals; and the collateral consequences that individuals face when convicted.Across many of these findings, where demographics are available, we have an opportunity to identify and respond to significant disparities in group outcomes.This report challenges stakeholders and policymakers to dig deeper into these patterns and missing data. It also implores policymakers and legislators to improve criminal justice data infrastructure to ensure a more transparent, fair, and equitable implementation of justice.