Worker Justice Center of New York

Dignity for Every Worker

aka The Worker Justice Center   |   Rochester, NY   |  http://www.wjcny.org

Mission

Worker Justice Center of New York pursues justice for those denied human rights with a focus on agricultural and other low wage workers, through legal representation, community empowerment and advocacy for institutional change.

Ruling year info

1981

Interim Co-Executive Director

Ms. Diana Saguilan Esq

Interim Co-Executive Director

Andrea Callan Esq.

Main address

1187 Culver Road

Rochester, NY 14609 USA

Show more contact info

Formerly known as

Worker Rights Law Center

EIN

16-1155130

NTEE code info

Legal Services (I80)

Civil Liberties Advocacy (R60)

Civil Rights, Advocacy for Specific Groups (R20)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Our programs focus on low-wage workers and agricultural workers in New York. Agriculture is among New York State’s most profitable industries, employing more than 100,000 people and contributing 5.7 billion dollars to the state’s economy per year. Many of New York’s agricultural workers are migrant and seasonal farm workers; an overwhelming majority of those are immigrants and/or racial minorities who suffer from the lack of economic opportunity due to language, cultural, social and legal barriers.  Most of our farmworkers are Latinx, do not speak English, have limited literacy in their native language, and little formal education. As many farmworkers are undocumented, they are hesitant to reach out to authorities or organizations when they are experiencing labor, health, safety, or immigration-related violations. These issues have only been highlighted and widened by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Worker Justice Center of NY

Over 80,000 migrant and seasonal farmworkers are employed in New York State each year. Many of the workers' employers and housing providers fail to comply with laws designed to protect the workers. Further, most of the state's farmworkers are foreign nationals and people of color. They are frequently victims of discrimination at the hands of employers, public accommodations, government agencies, and law enforcement officers. FLSNY seeks to remedy these problems by providing legal representation to farmworkers. FLSNY also has a number of special projects. These include: Farmworker Organization Project; Farmworker Women's Institute; Farmworker Domestic Violence Project; Racial Profiling Project; Farmworker Youth Project; Pesticide Education Project; Farmworker HIV/AIDS Project; Workers' Compensation Project; and Public Education for Migrant Children Project. For more information on each of these special projects, please visit our website: www.flsny.org.

Population(s) Served
Migrant workers
Domestic workers

Where we work

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

The Worker Justice Center of New York (WJCNY) pursues justice for those denied human rights with a focus on agricultural and other low wage workers, through legal representation, community empowerment and advocacy for institutional change. Founded in 1981, WJCNY serves between 5,000 and 7,000 human trafficking survivors, farm laborers, and other low wage workers per year. Our advocacy work positively impacts the lives of over 80,000 New Yorkers who work on farms across the state and over 750,000 immigrants who live here. We believe everyone has the right to dignity, respect, and safety at work.

WJCNY is the only statewide, multi-strategy, multi-issue non-profit law organization that provides direct services to all farm workers in New York, regardless of their immigration status. Our programs include: workplace education and outreach, advocacy, legal services, survivor services, and human trafficking prevention. These programs work in tandem to serve the various needs of our clients to achieve self-realization.

With the passage of the Farmworker Fair Labor Practices Act in 2019, WJCNY is prioritizing serving farmworkers in the new legislative
landscape in which we find ourselves. This includes providing them information and support on the right to organize, and ensuring that
the hard fought protections in the legislation are realized, including the right to a day of rest, and the right to overtime at 60 hrs in one
week. Our outreach team and legal team are partnering to ensure this goal is met.

Our programs include:

Workplace Education and Outreach: Our dedicated team of worker rights advocates travel to farmworker housing on farms, community locations in rural areas, and urban worksites for low wage industries to engage workers. They conduct onsite multi-lingual trainings in labor rights and workplace safety, and connect workers with services and support.

Human Trafficking Prevention: We identify and investigate labor trafficking across New York State, supporting victims through identification, investigation, extraction, and reintegration after a trafficking experience, in collaboration with law enforcement.

Legal: WJCNY has a robust legal practice, representing workers on wage theft, workplace harassment, discrimination, and others.

Survivor Services: Our bilingual staff stand shoulder to shoulder with survivors as they navigate intimate partner or workplace violence, and provide connection to legal services, resources, and support through a trauma informed lens.

Advocacy: Our advocacy team engages workers, community members, and legislators to improve policies, and build community power. Goals and objectives in this program area cannot be measured in the number of individuals, as these victories improve the lives of countless families and communities in New York State.

WJCNY has 24 full-time staff with three offices across the state. We have recently rearranged our management structure to provide more capacity to our programs and provide additional administrative support including grant compliance, donor services, legal administration, etc. We've been doing this for almost 40 years and have built a strong network of partners and allies in all our programs.

This past year, WJCNY has:
• Educated thousands of farmworkers on health hazards, pesticide exposure prevention, and how to keep themselves safe in extreme heat.
• Distributed over $40,000 in direct assistance to low-wage workers impacted by COVID-19.
• Educated 12,000 workers online on "know your rights" information.
• Recovered millions in wages and damages for hard working people.

And as this administration continues its attack on immigrants, our supporters are helping keep families together. Because of our supporters, we have trained immigrants on their rights and how to ensure their children are not thrown into the foster system. Children of detained parent(s) will have a safe place to go with a designated guardian or can fly to be with family if their parents are detained.

The COVID-19 pandemic has only highlighted the stark contrast between the rights of workers at different income levels. WJCNY has advocated for protections for low-wage workers during this economic downturn, especially those with immigration vulnerabilities.

Financials

Worker Justice Center of New York
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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Worker Justice Center of New York

Board of directors
as of 8/23/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Mr. Artemio Guerra, Esq.

Getman, Sweeney and Dunn LLP

Rachel Roberts

Sandy Oxford

UFCW

Judith Ahrens, PhD

Michael Bersani, Esq.

Michaels & Smolak, P.C.

Alissa Brennan, Esq.

Phillips Lytle

Myrna Capaldi

Erin Casey, Esq.

Mark Drexler, Esq.

Forsyth, Howe, O'Dwyer, Kalb, & Murphy, P.C.

Shawn Duhaney

Artemio Guerra, Esq.

Getman, Sweeney, and Dunn, PLLC

Nicole Hallett, Esq.

University at Buffalo School of Law

Michael Lingle, Esq.

Thomas & Solomon LLP

Carolyn Mow

Getman, Sweeney, and Dunn, PLLC

Hope Olsson, Esq.

retired

Peter Rosenblum, Esq.

Bard College

Susan Zucker

Alissa Brennan, Esq.

Phillips Lytle

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? No
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? No
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? No
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 08/23/2021

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Hispanic/Latino/Latina/Latinx
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Decline to state
Disability status
Decline to state

The organization's co-leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Decline to state
Disability status
Person with a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 10/15/2019

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Data
  • We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
  • We analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
  • We disaggregate data by demographics, including race, in every policy and program measured.
Policies and processes
  • We use a vetting process to identify vendors and partners that share our commitment to race equity.
  • We have a promotion process that anticipates and mitigates implicit and explicit biases about people of color serving in leadership positions.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.