This Tuesday, December 14th at 4PM ET, the Democracy Policy Network is holding a video briefing on The Promise of State Public Advocate Offices. We will discuss the transformative institution — most prominently seen in New York City — that can supercharge government transparency, engagement, and access. Register here.
We will share how you can bring a Public Advocate Office to your city or state — and spotlight Del. Vaughn Stewart of Maryland’s recently-submitted legislation to establish a publicly-elected, statewide Public Advocate who would serve as an independent liaison between Maryland citizens and the Maryland state government, and whose office would be tasked with and empowered for:
- (1) watchdogging the state government in the spirit of the public interest;
- (2) receiving, responding, and acting on citizen complaints about state government;
- (3) facilitating democratic engagement in state government; and
- (4) advocating for constructive, systemic solutions to patterns seen in citizen complaints.
Joining us will be past and present Public Advocates:
- Jumaane Williams, current New York City Public Advocate
- Mark Green, the first New York City Public Advocate
- Ronald Chen, former New Jersey Public Advocate
We are particularly interested in the Public Advocate Office model as a way to deepen democracy. When there are more ways to have your voice heard, more venues where problems can be identified and ideas can be raised up, more bully pulpits where attention can be drawn to critical issues, more minds working on modernizing government, and more paths to higher office, citizens are better empowered. We hope you can join us.