By Mike Scott
“I love this job. The pay is doubled every January 1 and the benefits are better than any corporation--the gaining of good friends and great experience,” joked Kahoka’s Jill Shinn.
As an unpaid volunteer, Shinn serves as a Community Representative through the Northeast Missouri Clients Council for Human Needs, and attends board meetings in New York City four times each year.
Shinn was one of the honorees at the Benefit Awards Dinner for the National Center for Law and Economic Justice, held in New York City on June 3.
“It was a great honor,” she said. Shinn was honored for her twenty years of service on the organization’s board of directors. “This a a great organization with great people who work there. They all have a real passion for what they do.”
Others honored were Gordon Bonnyman, Jr., Executive Director of the Tennessee Justice Center, Richard Cotton, Executive Vice President and General Counsel of NBC Universal, and Cory A. Booker, Mayor of Newark, New Jersey. The evening was emceed by Pete Williams, NBC News Justice Correspondent. As you can see, Shinn was in distinguished company.
The National Center for Law and Economic Justice (formerly the Welfare Law Center) was founded in 1965, in the heyday of the civil rights movement. From the very start, the Center joined with southern civil rights lawyers in landmark cases, worked with community-based organizations around the country, won ground breaking victories in the courts and committed resources to bring about legislative reform. Through these early successes, the Center demonstrated that the law can be a powerful instrument for improving the lives of the most disadvantaged members of our society.
For the past 43 years, the Center has led the way nationally in promoting economic justice, fairness and opportunity for those in need; securing systemic reform in the delivery of income support and related human services; and safe-guarding important legal and constitutional rights. We have done so in the face of a constantly changing legal, social and political environment, marked by a significant shift in authority over social programs from the federal government to the state and local level, and increased privatization of benefits and services.
NCLEJ advances the cause of economic justice for low-income, families, individuals, and communities across the country by addressing a wide range of critical issues. The following are the major issues that NCLEJ's current and recent advocacy addresses.
--Privatization & Modernization
--Meeting Basic Needs