Jenice develops, implements and advises on communications strategies to support ITEP’s mission to secure sustainable, progressive tax policies at the local, state and federal levels. She draws on years of experience working on anti-poverty and social justice issues to inform her occasional writings on how tax policy contributes to economic inequality.
She has wide-ranging experience in strategic communications and media relations, including serving as the national media director for Service Employees International Union (SEIU), where she wrote executive speeches and op-eds; regularly booked the union president on national broadcast media; directed the union’s media outreach during the 2012 election cycle, and helped bring media attention to organizing campaigns on behalf of the union’s members. Her previous experience also includes building and implementing a strategic communications program from the ground up at CLASP (an anti-poverty policy group). She also led media relations at the National Women’s Law Center, where she closely worked with senior legal scholars and researchers and used her media outreach, communications and writing skills to elevate the center’s legal, campaign and policy work.
Jenice joined ITEP in 2014. She is an alumnus of Alabama State University and has a master of science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, College of Media.
She is a proud but disenfranchised Washingtonian who pays her federal income taxes. The irony of working on issues of tax fairness while being taxed without representation is not lost on her.jenice at itep.org
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Many 1990s policies were grounded in harmful, erroneous ideas such as financial struggles are due to personal shortcomings and less government is better. Lawmakers didn’t apply these ideas consistently, however. For example, there was no drive to reduce corporate welfare even as policymakers slashed the safety net and disinvested in lower-income communities. So, it’s not surprising that a bipartisan group of lawmakers concluded during that era that the CTC was an appropriate vehicle to give higher-income households a tax break while leaving out poor children.
It will not magically become easier for families to put food on the table or make their next rent payment. Policymakers must act. People are struggling because they are either out of work, involuntarily working part-time, trying to financially catch up after being out of work for a spell, or squeaking by because we live in a wealthy democracy that fails to guarantee basics such as access to affordable housing, health care, food, and jobs that pay living wages.