Topic: Human Rights

Recent Updates

Supporting Undocumented College Students and Their Families in California

Undocumented young people and their families are integral to the social, economic, and cultural fabric of California. The state is home to roughly 3 million undocumented residents, with an estimated 72,000 undocumented youth attending California’s public institutions of higher education. Today, the Heising-Simons Foundation is thrilled to be one of the inaugural funders of the California Campus Catalyst Fund (the Catalyst Fund), a three-year, $10 million initiative designed to expand and create programs in the higher education system to support undocumented students and their families. Continue Reading

Introducing Our New Director of Human Rights

I’m delighted to announce that Angie Junck will join the Heising-Simons Foundation as our new, and first ever, director of Human Rights. Angie comes to us with expertise in immigration and criminal law and policy, as well as deep nonprofit experience, most recently serving as the supervising attorney and director of immigrant defense programs at the Immigrant Legal Resource Center (ILRC), one of our grantee partners and an organization she has been with for more than 13 years. Continue Reading

Grantee Civil Rights Corps Wins Court Challenge for Low Income People in Tennessee

A federal judge has struck down Tennessee’s policy of suspending driver’s licenses of people who cannot afford to pay court costs or traffic fines, the first such ruling of its kind in the United States and a significant step toward decriminalizing people for being poor. Continue Reading

Supporting Immigrants Affected by Domestic Zero-Tolerance Policy

America is a nation enriched by immigrants, many of whom traveled a difficult path to come to the United States. Many were forced to leave friends and family members behind. Such separations are tragic. The trauma they inflict scar those affected as well as the generations that follow. Usually, such rending is the product of war or upheaval somewhere else in the world. But today, separations are the product of U.S. government policy. Continue Reading

Essie Justice Group Releases National Report On Women Impacted by Mass Incarceration

The context is stark: At least 1 in 4 women in the United States has a family member who is incarcerated. Moreover, women are being incarcerated more frequently today than ever before. Continue Reading

Equal Justice Initiative’s New Memorial Featured on “60 Minutes”

On April 26, 2018, the Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) will open the United States’ first memorial dedicated to the thousands of African-Americans lynched over a seven-decade period following the Civil War, and a new museum dedicated to slavery and its legacy today. EJI is supported by the Foundation’s Human Rights program. Continue Reading

Empowering Those Closest to the Problems: $2M for Groundswell Fund

We are delighted to announce a $2 million grant in support of the Groundswell Fund, an organization that is responding to the myriad needs of… Continue Reading

Statement Regarding DACA

Today, the Heising-Simons Foundation joined 14 other California foundations in a joint CEO statement denouncing President Trump’s decision to terminate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. We object to the President’s shameful decision in the strongest terms— and we stand in support of, and in solidarity with, the many nonprofit organizations we fund throughout the country that work to support these young people. Continue Reading

News Regarding Money Bail Reform in California

California Governor Jerry Brown and Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye have joined legislative leaders to support looking at reforms in California’s money bail system in 2018.… Continue Reading

The Value of Higher Education for Currently and Formerly Incarcerated Individuals

Renewing Communities is a four-year initiative based in California that seeks to provide high-quality courses to students inside prisons and jails, and to help formerly incarcerated students on college campuses transform their lives. Continue Reading