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Pushed to the Bottom: The Experience of Poverty in the United States

  • The New School - Wolff Conference Room 6 East 16th Street, Room D1103 New York, NY 10003 (map)

The Multidimensional Aspects of Poverty research, which was conducted from 2016 to 2019 in six areas across the United States, sought to determine the various aspects of poverty as lived by people in poverty. Based on an innovative approach, people in poverty, academics, and social workers teamed up to design and implement this project, and to analyze the data together.

The result is a groundbreaking new look at poverty in the United States. But it is just the beginning. Join us to learn more and to share your own thoughts and ideas.

Poverty is created by all of us. Together, we can end it.

6:00 - 7:00 p.m.: Presentations

7:00 - 8:00 p.m.: Wine and cheese reception and discussion


Jessica Bartholow of the Western Center on Law & Poverty is a Policy Advocate with nearly two decades of experience in anti-poverty organizing, advocacy and program development at the local, state and national level. Jessica has co-authored several advocate and program guides and led a coalition to support the passage of several pieces of signed legislation that improve public benefits delivery, consumer protections and financial empowerment for low-income Americans. Jessica holds a Master’s Degree in Political Science and is the 2012 recipient of the Wellstone -Wheeler National Anti-Hunger Advocate of the Year Award.

Maryann Broxton of ATD Fourth World is co-director of the US MAP project. A Boston native and graduate of Lesley University, her first-hand experience of poverty has combined with her academic experience to give her a unique approach to the study of poverty in America.

Harvey Epstein, Assembly Member representing the East Side of Manhattan, including the neighborhoods of the Lower East Side, East Village, Alphabet City, Stuyvesant Town/Peter Cooper Village, Murray Hill, Tudor City and the United Nations. Harvey has been a public interest lawyer in New York City since graduating from CUNY Law School in 1994. He worked as a housing and economic development attorney both at the Legal Aid Society and Legal Services NYC and most recently at the Urban Justice Center. He has collaborated with dozens of community based organizations on economic, racial and social justice, Harvey has been at the forefront of critical economic development and housing issues. He has also worked tirelessly on dozens of pieces of legislation that have helped improve the lives of everyday New Yorkers. An experienced leader and advocate for the progressive movement, Harvey has introduced, voted for and supported legislation that protect tenants and preserve affordable housing in New York City, promote environmental sustainability,supports public education, voting reforms as well as criminal justice reform. He continues to advocate alongside the community to defend reproductive rights, implement gun control, and strengthen New York’s status as a sanctuary city. Harvey resides in the East Village with his wife, Anita; their children, Leila and Joshua; and their rescue-dog, Homer.

Ray Lopez is Director of Programs at Little Sisters of the Assumption Family Health Services. He oversees Nursing, Advocacy & Food Pantry, and Parenting & Child Development. As Director of Environmental Health Services, Ray leads a team of Community Health Workers who focus on asthma prevention using a holistic, hands-on approach which includes conducting home assessments, remediating asthma triggers, training households to improve housing conditions and developing community leaders. In partnership with the NY Academy of Medicine, Ray led a HUD-funded study to evaluate the asthma program which was published in the Environmental Justice journal in 2015. Ray is a leader with Metro IAF’s Manhattan Together, and their efforts achieved a landmark federal court settlement with the NYC Housing Authority, Baez v NYCHA, which aims to protect residents exposed to mold conditions that exacerbate asthma.

Alberto Minujin, is Founder and Executive Director of Equity for Children. Alberto Minujin is a professor at the Studley Graduate Program in International Affairs (SGPIA) housed at The Milano School at The New School, with a special focus on topics related to social policy and children’s rights. He serves as director of the School’s International Field Program (IFP) in Buenos Aires, Argentina and is a member of the Latin American Observatory (OLA). Until 2005, Professor Minujin was senior program officer for policy analysis in the Division of Policy and Planning of UNICEF Headquarters, New York. He operates a consultancy to UNICEF and other organizations worldwide. In 2010, Minujin was awarded the Argentina Bicentennial Medal in recognition of his contributions to the fields of child rights and social policy. He is the author of many books, articles and papers about child rights, social policy and the middle class.

Kimberly Tyre of ATD Fourth World is from New York and has struggled against poverty her whole life. A survivor of domestic violence with first-hand experience of the child welfare system, she is a passionate advocate for parents at risk of losing their children to foster care. Kimberly is a member of the Multidimensional Aspects of Poverty US national research team and recently received her BA.