On his first day in office, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio launched the Public Advocate’s Community Organizing and Constituent Services Department to help organize communities to play a more meaningful role in city government. The department provides New Yorkers with specific organizing tools and strategies in addition to helping them navigate City bureaucracy and connecting them to the services they need.
In addition to responding to constituent complaints, the Community Organizing and Constituent Services Department will:
- Formulate organizing toolkits in multiple languages for interested New Yorkers, which will include information on how government functions and on action steps residents and groups can take to advocate for policy change.
- Hold workshops in neighborhoods across the five boroughs to educate New Yorkers on organizing strategies. These workshops will feature local leaders and grassroots organizations that support the program.
- Launch a new organizing page on the Public Advocate Website to connect New Yorkers across the City who face related challenges or support similar issues and help them organize petition drives, demonstrations, and civic actions.
- Build coalitions with existing local organizations that can help neighborhoods organize on key issues including housing, education, police-community relations and other social justice priorities.
- Distribute Annual Public Advocate Organizing Awards to emerging leaders in communities that successfully fight on behalf of their neighborhoods.