Research & Policy Work


As a national leader in economic advocacy for survivors, we develop and promote actionable research and engage partners in action for change.

Grounded in our organizational values, our policy and research work is carried out in partnership, integrated into all aspects of our project work, laser-focused on structures and systems that produce inequity, and intended for change. We’re building National Advisory Committees to advise and advance our efforts

Research that reflects and fuels

CSAJ supports, makes visible, and conducts research that reflects survivors’ lived economic realities and uses research (the process and data) to fuel movements for change.

Survivors and advocates inform our research agenda, and our research seeks to enhance practice and change inequitable systems and policies. The goals of our research and evaluation are to:

  • Contribute to a knowledge base on the link between economic security, safety, and social inequality
  • Create an exchange of what advocacy approaches and partnerships work
  • Build the research and evaluation capacity of advocates and programs
  • Inform and monitor law and policy making that advances racial and economic equity

Policy work that gathers and transforms

CSAJ conducts policy and system change work that gathers broad partnerships that will create deep and lasting transformation for survivors’ economic and racial equity.

We prioritize the insights and expertise of direct advocates and survivors and build partnerships for change – locally and nationally. We’re currently developing a policy agenda, but bring our strategic attention to economic and consumer issues where survivors’ are uniquely affected, such as:

  • Coerced debt and predatory lending
  • Equitable tax policy, and
  • Education, loan, mortgage rules and regulations that ignore costs
  • Family law matters

Recent policy work includes:

The United States Capitol building with an American flag flying on it.

  • Department of Treasury: Offered recommendations to address stolen and missing stimulus checks (CARES Act & American Rescue Plan)

  • Violence Against Women Act: Created an “Economic Abuse Provision” in the Reauthorized VAWA

  • Comprehensive Credit Act: Contributed language to reform credit reporting and repair systems for survivors

  • State Coerced Debt Legislation: Supported state coerced debt legislative advocacy in Texas, Maine, California

  • Debt Bondage Act: Submitted comments to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau urging them to strengthen protections for trafficking survivors who are contending with debt (read here)