Gender, Racial, and Ethnic Justice

Despite significant progress, structural inequality based on gender, race, class, disability, and ethnicity persists around the world. And it is compounded and complicated by today’s challenges: Violence against women and girls—rooted in patriarchy, and including laws, policies, and cultural norms aimed at curtailing rights—inflicts deep and lasting physical, psychological, and economic damage. People of color are disproportionately policed and incarcerated. Immigrants and LGBT people are targeted simply because of who they are.

But today’s challenging realities have helped fuel vibrant new leaders and movements that are engaging in innovative advocacy and forging unexpected alliances. In the Global South, in particular, there are powerful efforts underway to reframe narratives to represent the lived realities of women and girls in communities throughout the world. Our work is to support courageous people and organizations in their efforts to harness this collective energy for political and social change that is humane, and lasting. 

This means recognizing that race, gender, class, disability, and ethnic identity are deeply connected—often inextricably so—and making sure that efforts to address them are rooted in this understanding. It’s an understanding that informs our commitment to shifting repressive power dynamics, and to strengthening the rights and influence of those who are most affected by violence and suppression in the US and in the Global South.

Our work in Gender, Racial, and Ethnic Justice

International

Our grant making aims to strengthen government responsiveness and shift cultural norms to empower women and girls, and to counter the appalling violence that is too often a feature of their lives.

Learn about our work internationally

United States

We focus on reducing mass incarceration, challenging the attack on women’s fundamental rights, and confronting the demonization of immigrants.

Learn about our work In the US

More from Gender, Racial, and Ethnic Justice

Director, West Africa
Lagos, Nigeria
Director, Gender, Racial, and Ethnic Justice
New York, USA
Grants Manager, Gender, Racial, and Ethnic Justice
New York, USA
Program Officer, Gender, Racial, and Ethnic Justice
New York, USA
Program Associate, Southern Africa
Johannesburg, South Africa
International Program Director, Gender, Racial, and Ethnic Justice; Director, Southern Africa
Johannesburg, South Africa
Senior Program Officer, Gender, Racial, and Ethnic Justice
New York, USA

Rooted in systems of power and patriarchy, violence against women and girls is both a consequence and a driver of inequality and social injustice. It transcends cultural boundaries and political contexts, reinforcing and exacerbating other forms of discrimination based on disability, race, class, caste, sexual orientation, and age.

By approaching this critical issue in ways that are driven by community realities, we see an opportunity to transform social norms that contribute to violence. We seek more accountability for violence, and support efforts to reshape the global agenda to reflect the needs and experiences of affected women and girls in the Global South, with particular attention to the ways race, class, and gender intersect.  

We work to strengthen diverse Global South leadership, along with an understanding of the structures that shape and drive violence, and the ways dominant systems of power shape women and girls’ experiences. We support building research and evidence on the scope of the problem, and interventions that can influence policy and practice. We also seek to cultivate philanthropy and bilateral donors to ensure increased and more coordinated funding for the field.


What we don’t fund

We know nonprofit staff’s time is valuable, so we discourage using it to submit proposals that don’t fall within funding guidelines. In this spirit, we aim to be transparent about what our grant making does not support.

We do not fund direct services that are not linked to a larger reform or policy change agenda.


Mass-incarceration reform

The United States incarcerates more of its citizens than any other country in the world—mainly poor people and people of color. Our grants support public education and advocacy for sentencing reforms aimed at reducing prison populations and redirecting funds into crime prevention and other initiatives that foster the success of people in neighborhoods hardest hit by crime and incarceration. We also support the replication of a limited number of innovative alternative-to-incarceration models. And we support communications initiatives that push back against the narrative of incarceration as an answer to public safety, instead emphasizing the humanity of the people in the criminal justice system—and more rational and cost-effective approaches to addressing crime.

Anticipated Outcomes

Reduced incarceration

Jail and prison populations are reduced, as is racial disparity in the criminal justice system.

Alternatives to incarceration

There is an increase in government funding for prison diversion, drug treatment, restorative justice, and other alternatives to incarceration, as well as for community-based employment and crime prevention initiatives. 


Support for reform

A larger, stronger base of constituents actively supports reform on the local level—and includes greater numbers of people of color, formerly incarcerated people, crime survivors, law enforcement, and business leaders. 


Policy and practice

New policy and practice interventions reduce the criminal justice system’s disproportionate impact on people of color. 


Reproductive and gender justice

We seek to strengthen the base of visible, effective support for reproductive health and rights. We believe that rather than being divisive in our politics and culture, these issues are fundamental ones that can add momentum and energy to other efforts to disrupt inequality. At the federal and state levels, we work to ensure advocates’ and policymakers’ increased, consistent, and diverse support for reproductive justice, so that all women have autonomy over their bodies and lives. We test new models of support and organizing and invest in new leaders who can work across race and geography.

Anticipated Outcomes

Coordination and influence

Key organizations align to block harmful federal regulations and rollbacks. 


Effective alliances

In several critical states, innovative alliances advance laws and policies that strengthen reproductive and sexual rights. 


Centering sexual and reproductive justice

Organizations and networks that have not historically incorporated sexual and reproductive justice agendas into their ongoing work, do so.

Strong leadership

Leadership on these issues is more representative and includes women of color, low-income women, and gender non-conforming people who begin to influence the agenda of the larger movement. 


Immigrant and migrant rights

Our work supports efforts to advance more rational and humane immigration policy. We focus on addressing how immigration laws are enforced, and on curbing the use of criminal justice mechanisms for immigration matters—so that immigrant communities are no longer regular targets of punitive practices. We work to deepen existing alliances and build bridges to new partners.

Anticipated Outcomes

Federal policies and protections

At the federal level, immigration advocates help block or limit punitive enforcement efforts and new spending on enforcement. Where possible, they make progress toward proactive policies like improved due process protections, reinstating judicial review, eliminating mandatory detention, and universal access to counsel in deportation proceedings.

State and local policies and protections

In targeted states and localities, immigrant communities and their allies influence government and decision makers to create policies that protect immigrants, and overturn and prevent excessively punitive policies and practices.

Transparency and accountability

There is increased transparency and accountability from Customs and Border Patrol, and increased support for more effective investments in the border region.

Coordination and influence

Organizations working on immigration enforcement reform bring together and leverage a broad range of supporters to more effectively influence decision makers.

What we don’t fund

We know nonprofit staff’s time is valuable, so we discourage using it to submit proposals that don’t fall within funding guidelines. In this spirit, we aim to be transparent about what our grant making does not support.

Mass incarceration: We do not support work on juvenile justice, the school-to-prison pipeline, prisoner re-entry services, employment of formerly incarcerated people, indigent defense reform, civil access to justice, conditions of confinement, the death penalty, and wrongful convictions. We also do not fund direct services (legal or otherwise) except as connected to a larger systemic reform strategy.

Reproductive justice: We do not fund work on sexuality education, gender-based violence, human trafficking, and sex trafficking.

Immigrant rights: We do not make grants in support of broad-based strategies to achieve comprehensive immigration reform, immigrant labor issues, naturalization and civic engagement of immigrants, educational and health access for immigrants, refugee resettlement or refugee humanitarian assistance work, language access, spatial segregation, voting rights, employment inequality, the wealth gap, and educational attainment/affirmative action. We also do not fund direct services (legal or otherwise) except as connected to a larger systemic reform strategy.

We do not fund standalone conferences and individual research projects that are not linked to ongoing strategy support, and we do not fund individual degrees and fellowships.