New report encourages local leaders to make housing in the Greater Washington region more affordable

HOUSING | The Greater Washington region is home to some of the areas most expensive real estate, and with Amazon headed to Northern Virginia and housing prices rising, advocates are encouraging local leaders to commit to creating and preserving affordable housing. (WAMU, 1/30)

“The announcement by Amazon that Crystal City was selected for HQ2 will provide significant benefits for the region,” says a recent report from the Northern Virginia Affordable Housing Alliance. “However, this announcement should create a regional sense of urgency and commitment to address our housing supply and affordability gap.” The affordability gap exists throughout the Washington area — not just in Northern Virginia — but Arlington’s housing market is already the priciest in the region, according to multiple analyses. To solve the problem, advocates say increasing public subsidies is important, but not the only solution.

RELATED: Many of the solutions mentioned in NVAHA’s new report were highlighted in the Housing Leaders Group’s A Guidebook for Increasing Housing Affordability in the Greater Washington Region. WRAG, as one of the co-conveners of the HLG, is working with NVAHA and other active HLG members to address the housing affordability crisis that is threatening the region’s economic growth and quality of life.

CRIMINAL JUSTICE | Opinion: How the justice system criminalizes the poor — and funds itself in the process (WaPo, 1/29)

– DC charter schools are closing and putting children in education limbo. (WaPo, 1/31)

Koch network poised to scale up efforts to remake K-12 education with a pilot project in five states (WaPo, 1/29)

CHILD CARE | Arlington’s Child Care Initiative has the potential to make a dent in the rising costs of child care in the community. (GGW, 1/29)

ENVIRONMENT | Coal ash piles in the Chesapeake Bay watershed will be cleaned up thanks to a new agreement between Governor Ralph Northam of Virginia, lawmakers, and Dominion Energy. (WAMU, 1/25)

NONPROFITS | Nonprofit boards generally know that diversity is important, but very few of them do anything to actively encourage it. (Fast Company, 1/29)

TRANSPORTATION | Purple Line contractor says it will cost nearly $60 million to offset delays of the 21 station light-rail project between Prince George’s and Montgomery counties. (WaPo, 1/30)

DIGITAL DIVIDE | DC is one of a small handful of cities addressing the digital divide by offering publicly funded tech support programs. (CityLab, 1/25)

– The Wayfinder Foundation has announced its second fellowship cohort of women activist leaders in Oakland, CA and Washington DC.

– Nonprofits and Donors Worry About Long-Term Impact of Shutdown (Chronicle, 1/25 – subscription)

RFP: The Gannett Foundation has created “A Community Thrives,” part of the USA TODAY NETWORK, as a way to share community building ideas on the national stage, gain support through donations and local connections, and have a chance at receiving a portion of $2,000,000 in grants to give your project and organization the best possible chance to succeed. Submissions for the 2019 A Community Thrives program are open from January 29, 2019 through February 28, 2019 at 11:59 pm ET. Learn more and submit your idea here.

Social Sector Job Openings 

Controller | Meyer Foundation – New!
Communications and Development Specialist | Grantmakers In Health – New!
CSR Internship | Gannett Inc., USAToday /Gannett Foundation – New!
Vice President for Donor Relations | Community Foundation of Howard County – New!
Senior Communications Officer | Gill Foundation
Individual Giving Manager | National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health
Development Manager | American Society of Landscape Architects
President​ | ​Virginia United Methodist Foundation
Chief Financial & Administrative Officer​ | ​Horizon Foundation
Foundation and Government Relations Officer​ | ​Shakespeare Theatre Company
Grants & Communications Officer​ | ​The Crimsonbridge Foundation
Executive Director​ | ​VHC Medical Brigade
Director of Development​ | ​DC Bar Foundation
Program Manager​ | ​Weissberg Foundation
Senior Supervising Attorney, Criminal Justice Reform​ | ​Southern Poverty Law Center
Director of Development​ | ​The Barker Adoption Foundation
Grant Reviewer​ | ​Jack and Jill of America Foundation
Executive Assistant​ | ​Jack and Jill of America Foundation
Administrative Associate | United Philanthropy Forum
Executive Director | The Volgenau Foundation
President | Washington Regional Association of Grantmakers
Program Associate for Strategy, Equity, and Research | Eugene & Agnes E. Meyer Foundation

Hiring? Post your job on WRAG’s job board and get it included in the Daily! Free for members; $60/60 days for non-members. Details here.

Community Calendar

To add an event to WRAG’s community calendar, email Rebekah Seder. Click here to view the community calendar.

Today is the start of Black History Month, which is celebrated throughout the DC region.

Next week we’ll publish the (Almost) Daily WRAG on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.

– Buffy

New report highlights disparities for women in Montgomery County

GENDER/RACE | Women in Montgomery County have made strides in the labor force, education and in the political arena according to a new report from the Montgomery County Commission for Women, but it also highlights disparities across gender, race, and geography and focuses on several areas for concern, including the 16,500 women living in poverty, and clear racial and ethnic disparities in women’s health. (WAMU, 1/29)

“This county is the same one we all think of with the great schools and the women with a lot of Ph.D.’s, and yet there are so many people who are really just struggling to make ends meet,” said Diana Rubin, second vice president of the County Commission. According to Rubin, that harsh reality is the thought behind the report’s title: A Tale of Two Counties: The Status of Women in Montgomery County (2018).

– DC charter school teachers are paid less on average than their public school counterparts, while DC charter school administrators’ salaries are on the rise, and public information about it is hard to find. (City Paper, 1/30)

– Virginia has a new Student Loan Advocate with the primary focus to assist Virginians struggling with student loan debt. (WTOP, 1/28)

WORKFORCE | A new study published by CECP, Imperative, and PwCMaking work more meaningful: Building a fulfilling employee – indicates that the economy may be headed into a “Fourth Industrial Revolution” where employee fulfillment is a source of purpose and innovation at work and the new narrative of the workplace.

HEALTH | Lawmakers in DC are asking why, after spending millions of dollars to address the issue, the District continues to see a rise in opioid-related overdose deaths. (WaPo, 1/28)

FOOD SYSTEMS | The important contributions of agriculture to regional job and economic growth is the subject of a comprehensive new report from the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (COG), which looks at changes in the farming landscape. (COG, 1/18)

– The Public Welfare Foundation has announced a new strategic framework to concentrate fully on criminal and youth justice, and will spend the next two years transitioning to a transformative approach to justice that is community-led, restorative, and racially just.

Opinion: There’s a lot of history in the distrust between African Americans and the police (WaPo, 1/29)

POVERTY | The Crushing Logistics of Raising a Family Paycheck to Paycheck (Atlantic, 1/28)

ENVIRONMENT | Washington is the latest city in a nationwide movement to ban plastic straws and the DC Department of Energy and Environment is enforcing the new law. (WaPo, 1/28)

SHUTDOWN | DC Seeks Reimbursement for Shutdown Losses and Residents Face Ongoing Woes (City Paper, 1/29)

Related: WRAG President Tamara Lucas Copeland wrote in her 1/28 blog post “Giving Beyond the Federal Shutdown Emergency”  about the role of the nonprofit community during the shutdown as the true safety net, and the necessity of keeping the sector strong and ready for the next emergency.

PHILANTHROPY | The Intersection of Corporate Philanthropy and Private Sector Lobbying (NPQ, 1/28)

Oh no! This Valentine’s Day is going to be a little less sweet as the company that used to make the popular SweetHeart Candies went out of business and its new owners aren’t ready to start making new batches yet.

The (Almost) Daily WRAG will be back on Friday!

– Buffy

Bill to protect tenants in evictions faces criticism from landlords

HOUSING | Maryland Delegate Jheanelle Wilkins will introduce a bill to restrict evictions to certain types of tenant violations, including breach of a lease and disorderly conduct. The bill will also guarantee at least a 60-day notice of eviction. Landlords in the state say the bill will make it harder to evict tenants. (Bethesda Beat, 12/5)

State legislation that would require Montgomery County landlords to provide “just cause,” for issuing evictions has drawn ire from apartment managers and apartment associations, who fear the bill would incumber the process of evicting “problem tenants.”

During the hearing [for the bill], both proponents and opponents testified on the bill, with a dozen people voicing opposition. Ron Wineholt, the vice president of government affairs for the Apartment and Office Building Association of Metropolitan Washington, said that in his observation, “99 percent of tenants” pay their rent on time and abide by the terms of the lease. With the 60-day required notice, he worries that Wilkins’ bill could prolong an already lengthy process of evicting “problem tenants,” interfering with the quiet enjoyment of the property by other tenants.

CRIMINAL JUSTICE | A warden from a Maryland Correctional Institution for Women is changing the food offered to make it healthier. (WaPo, 12/5)

IMMIGRATION | Proposed public charge rule could erode health insurance coverage gains among citizen children with non-citizen parents (Urban Institute, 12/4)

– How funders can think more about how they wield their power with grantees. (CEP, 11/29)

– Opinion: Facebook’s Bare-Knuckle Tactics Are Just One Sign of a Media Culture That Philanthropy Can Help Fix (Chronicle, 12/5)

– Opinion: Why there should be more outrage about student debt in the fight against poverty. (Truthout, 12/4)

Eliminating Book Deserts: How A D.C. Community Bookstore Is Breaking Down Barriers To Reading (WAMU, 12/6)

REMINDER | Daily WRAG readers, we want your opinion! In order to improve your reading experience, we ask that you complete this short survey by Wednesday, December 19 to let us know what you like and what could be better on the blog.

Some puns for your Thursday!

– Kendra

Prisons fail to provide mental health care

CRIMINAL JUSTICE | The Federal Bureau of Prisons implemented a new policy to provide better care and oversight for incarcerated individuals with mental health issues in 2014. New data suggest that federal prisons have failed to address the mental health needs of incarcerated individuals. (WaPo, 11/21)

A review of court documents and inmates’ medical records, along with interviews of former prison psychologists, revealed that although the Bureau of Prisons changed its rules, officials did not add the resources needed to implement them, creating an incentive for employees to downgrade inmates to lower care levels.

In an email, the bureau confirmed that mental-health staffing has not increased since the policy took effect.

– WRAG’s Racial Equity Working Group recently adopted an anti-Black racism frame to guide its work. Tamara Lucas Copeland, WRAG’s president, discusses why this is necessary as philanthropy begins to explore its role in helping to create a world free of racism. (Chronicle, 11/29)

– Why the under-representation of Black journalists at print and digital outlets which cover DC is a problem. (WCP, 11/29)

HEALTHCARE | A recently released Georgetown University report found that the number of uninsured US children is on the rise. (NPR, 11/29)

PUBLIC SAFETY | MoCo Council Approves Grant Funding To Pay for Additional Security at Faith Institutions (Bethesda Beat, 11/28)

Hill-Snowdon Foundation has been calling out anti-Black racism and white supremacy and investing in black-led social change work for a while. Here’s how they do it. (PND Blog, 11/28)

– Joe Goldman, president of the Democracy Fund, discusses why he joined other foundation leaders in signing a letter calling for the protection of the special counsel’s investigation, and urges other leaders to stand up for democracy. (Chronicle, 11/28)

MILITARY | Veterans Affairs Dept. tells Capitol Hill it won’t repay underpaid GI Bill benefits recipients (NBC News, 11/28)

Are the realistic Pokemon from the upcoming movie creeping you out?

– Kendra

DC will implement a law that allows the city to buy buildings to keep them affordable

– Yesterday, DC’s Mayor Muriel Bowser announced that the city will implement a ten-year-old law to allow the city to buy residential buildings that are put up for sale to make sure they remain affordable. (WAMU, 11/15)

Under the rules written by the Bowser administration, D.C. will be able to invoke DOPA on any residential building of more than five units as long as at least a quarter of the existing units are deemed affordable. “Affordable” is defined as rent that doesn’t exceed 30 percent of the income of a tenant making half the area median income, which is $110,000 a year for a family of four. (For a single person making $38,000 a year, “affordable” rent would be about $1,000 a month). It also includes rental units where the tenant is receiving city assistance.

– Governor Northam Issues Executive Order to Address Virginia’s Unmet Housing Needs (WINA, 11/15)

HEALTH | This local musician is working to change the sounds patients hear in hospitals. (DCist, 11/15)

– A special committee in the Virginia House of Delegates has made the recommendation to fund more school resource officers and mental health professionals to increase school safety. (Richmond Times, 11/14)

– Many Latino students lag academically in prosperous Maryland County (WaPo, 11/15)

CRIMINAL JUSTICE | Virginia is looking to reduce the money it spends on providing health care to its prison population. (Richmond Times, 11/13)

Social Sector Job Openings 

Executive Director | The Volgenau Foundation– New!
Senior Grant Writer | LCV Education Fund– New!
Director of Development | Girls on the Run of NOVA
Gifts and Grants Administrator | Community Foundation for Northern Virginia
Development Associate | Alliance for Justice
Fellow, Civic Engagement | The Keith Campbell Foundation for the Environment
Manager of Communications & Events | The Community Foundation for Northern Virginia
Director of “Count the Region” | The Community Foundation for Northern Virginia
President | Washington Regional Association of Grantmakers
Global Children’s Rights Program Officer | Wellspring Philanthropic Fund
Receptionist/Administrative Assistant | Exponent Philanthropy
OST Community Impact Program Manager | United Way of the National Capital Area
Development Coordinator | National Building Museum
Grants Program Manager | Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County
Director of Program Fund Development | National Society of Black Engineers
Special Grants Coordinator/Program Analyst I | Legal Services Corporation
Marketing/Membership Demand Generation Specialist/Digital Marketer | BoardSource
Office Assistant & Member Relations | BoardSource
Executive Assistant | Virginia Hospital Medical Brigade
Vice President of Programs | Gill Foundation
Senior Program Associate | Exponent Philanthropy
Program Coordinator | Exponent Philanthropy
Director, Corporate Partnerships | Exponent Philanthropy
Program Associate for Strategy, Equity, and Research | Eugene & Agnes E. Meyer Foundation

Hiring? Post your job on WRAG’s job board and get it included in the Daily! Free for members; $60/60 days for non-members. Details here.

Community Calendar

To add an event to WRAG’s community calendar, email Rebekah Seder. 

How much time is actually in a day?

– Kendra

Mental health care is necessary for restaurant workers

WORKFORCE | Restaurants workers often face high stress environments and low pay, and although this can have a negative impact on their mental health, many don’t have access to mental health resources. Workers in DC discuss their experiences and how they try to mitigate stressful situations within their own restaurants. (WCP, 11/15)

A confluence of factors leaves many hospitality industry workers uninsured, from thin profit margins to the fact that many restaurants chiefly hire part-time workers. Without work-sponsored insurance, low-wage earners can get stuck in limbo, unable to afford individual coverage but just above the income line of eligibility for Medicaid. It’s part of the reason you see GoFundMe pages fundraising for restaurant employees to afford care or time off to recover.

DC Health Benefit Exchange Authority Director Mila Kofman confirms that the local restaurant industry has some of the lowest offer rates. She says she’s never met a restaurant operator who didn’t want to offer coverage, but they question if they can afford it year after year.

– Virginia’s Attorney General Mark R. Herring will propose legislation aimed at combating hate crimes and “reining in white-supremacist violence” today. (WaPo, 11/15)

– D.C. Council Pushes Forward Bill to End Statute of Limitations for Prosecuting Sexual Abuse (WCP, 11/14)

ARTS & HUMANITIES | How the Washington Project for the Arts has supported artists who are the main caregivers for their children. (WAMU, 11/15)

TRANSPORTATION | Alexandria City Council has voted to allow shared dockless scooters, joining other cities in the region. (WaPo, 11/14)

CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORM | Should Your Birthday Determine Whether You Are Sentenced to Die in Prison? (Truthout, 11/13)

Happy National Philanthropy Day! Check out the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History’s philanthropy page to learn more about the history of the sector in the US.

– Kendra