New York City will engage Code for America to help make the process of finding and retaining health and human services more efficient for low-income NYC residents, providers, and City agencies. Together, NYC and Code for America will take the city’s data and service integration tool and turn it into a mobile application that meets the needs of field-based case workers. This project is aligned with the City’s efforts to increase interdepartmental service delivery and ensure that individuals enroll in services that will have the greatest impact on their health and quality of life. The project will also increase the collaboration across city departments as individuals work together to develop a tool that meets all of their diverse needs.
Meet the 2016 team:
Team Leads: Ariel Kennan, Director of Innovation and Design, NYC Mayor's Office of Operations and Matthew Klein, Executive Director, Center for Economic Opportunity and Senior Advisor for Service Innovation, NYC Mayor's Office
It is an honor for New York City to partner with Code for America, and we’re excited to be joined by civic-minded and innovative fellows who are dedicated to using their intelligence and creativity to make a difference. I’m looking forward to bringing them in to help with our efforts to use digital technologies to improve access to the City's health and human services.
Mayor Bill de Blasio, New York City, NY
In 2013, The City of New York partnered with Code for America to enlist a team of fellows to build technology to address criminal justice issues. The fellowship was sponsored by the Mayor’s Office of the Criminal Justice Coordinator and the Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications. Support and funding were provided by the Laura and John Arnold Foundation and Blue Ridge Foundation.
NYC fellows CJ Bryan, Doneliza Joaquin, and Ezra Spier quickly learned about the complex matrix of criminal justice stakeholders at the state, city, and borough levels. With the help of their city contact Jordan Dressler, General Counsel at the Mayor’s Office of the Criminal Justice Coordinator, the fellows met with stakeholders in all five boroughs in their office and in the courtrooms – from NYPD staff, district attorneys, and judges to defense attorneys, court staff, and nonprofits and advocacy organizations.
As part of their residency, the fellows met with Alternative to Incarceration providers that are contracted with the city to provide eligible criminal defendants an opportunity to avoid jail or prison through participation in community-based social services programs directed at their specific needs.
To find defendants who are eligible for a specific program, ATI staff currently must go from courtroom to courtroom to review paper versions of packets of criminal complaints, rap sheets, court calendars, as well as field referral calls and emails from judges, prosecutors , and defense attorneys. Only after a staff member has identified eligible candidates can he or she interview them to determine if they are a good fit for the program. This time-consuming process can lead to missed opportunities to connect eligible candidates with the services they need.
In response, the CfA team built Criminal Case Search, a web application that enables ATI program staff to run customized real-time searches of criminal case information like defendant demographics, criminal history, charge data, and court scheduling information. With Criminal Case Search, ATI program staff can identify and locate program-eligible candidates for the first time from their offices or via their mobile devices. Leveraging the data on the City’s Datashare platform, the filtering tool sifts through the data remotely according to user-defined criteria, producing easy-to-read lists of eligible program candidates and allowing program personnel more time to speak with and match candidates to their programs.
The fellowship team also attended and participated in a number of civic tech events, including Code Across America, #betaNYC meetups and hack nights, DataKind meetups, Civic Service Forum, and the New York Tech Meetup.
Meet the 2013 team:
CJ is a web developer and software consultant. Most recently, he rebuilt the online publishing platform for the Society for Cultural Anthropology. Previously he worked with Fight for the Future creating online campaign platforms. He spends the rest of his time riding bikes and hacking on small machines.…
Doneliza is an urban planner interested in city design, transportation networks, and data visualization. She has worked as a graphic designer and on community development and events at the Dumbo Improvement District. She holds degree in Urban Studies from Fordham University and a Masters in Urban Planning from Columbia University.
Ezra is a product manager and full-stack web/mobile developer, and was a 2013 Code for America Fellow on the New York City team. The team's primary project, NYC Criminal Case Search, is a web application that strengthens the city's Alternative to Incarceration programs by allowing them to access and search criminal justice data in real-time.
The 2016 New York Fellowship is supported by
the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation