Our Victories / Recent Impact

Our members have achieved victories for millions in New York and increasingly at the national level. These are just a few:

VICTORY! We will Invest in Our NY!

Parents, students, and educators have organized throughout the past decade to fully fund our public schools, especially those in immigrant, Black, and brown communities. Due to our more recent organizing efforts, this year’s historic budget will raise taxes on the wealthiest New Yorkers and Invest in Our New York.

$4 billion will be allocated to fund public schools over three years to meet the needs of Black, brown, and low-income districts and finally comply with the Campaign for Fiscal Equity court settlement! 

Thank you to our allies in the Invest in Our New York and the Alliance for Quality Education! ¡Si se pudo!

VICTORY! Rent relief for ALL New Yorkers!

A year into the COVID-19 pandemic, New Yorkers will get the rent relief they need and deserve, regardless of their immigration status. Along with the Housing Justice for All Coalition, we secured a $2.4 billion rent relief program, which will pay up to one year of rent arrears for debt accrued during the pandemic for those who qualify. 

An estimated 1.2 million tenants will ensure that they do not lose their homes. This victory makes it clear that everyone has a right to a roof. ¡Sí se pudo!

VICTORY! Excluded Workers WILL get relief!

Our members have won the fight for a first-in-the-nation $2.1 Billion Excluded Workers Fund. For an entire year, hundreds of thousands of essential workers were excluded from governmental relief. Now, undocumented workers will receive retroactive payments to reflect an entire year without work or government support during the pandemic.

This victory was possible after thousands of calls to elected officials, dozens of actions across the state, two bridge takeovers, a 23 day hunger strike, and much more. However, our work is not done. The fund is nearing exhaustion and many excluded workers have not applied.

We will continue fighting until we FULLY #FundExcludedWorkers.

Welcome our *NEW* Executive Team!

For nearly two decades, Arlenis, Jose, and Theo had the opportunity to learn and grow within our organization. Today, they step into the role of Co-Executive Directors of Make the Road New York.

Sienna will also be joining our Executive Team as Legal Director/Legal Counsel and Becca as Deputy Director. Becca and Sienna have been integral to growing our health and legal programs and they are the partners we need to drive this organization forward. Together, they will take Make the Road NY into its next chapter.

Learn more about our new Executive Team

VICTORY! The Public Charge Rule is Blocked!

Together with our allies, we stopped the racist public charge! The Biden Administration just dismissed the government’s appeal of our 2019 Make the Road v. Cuccinelli lawsuit. This means that the Trump Administration’s “public charge” rule is no longer in effect. The rule was a blatant attempt to discourage immigrants from utilizing benefits for themselves and their families and from applying for lawful permanent residence. It harmed thousands of New Yorkers.

Now, immigrant families can access life-saving health care, food, and housing assistance without fear of losing the chance to obtain lawful permanent residence.

Cash Assistance Program (Food Assistance Program End of 2020)

Before the end of March 2020, as low-income community members lost jobs without notice, the need for emergency food was immediate. We have expanded our food pantry programs in Brooklyn and Queens and created food distribution sites in Staten Island and Westchester. In total, we continuously distribute over 1,100 food bags per week.

The need for financial relief programs has also been overwhelming. Additionally, we have provided cash cards mailed to our members’ homes. In 2020, we sent out $4.5 Million worth of cash cards to 6,466 homes. 

VICTORY! The Walking While Trans ban has been repealed

On February 2, 2021, the Walking While Trans ban was repealed and sealed. This victory makes it safer for Black and brown trans women to walk down the street without the fear of an unjust arrest for “loitering for the purpose of prostitution.” For over 40 years, the Walking While Trans ban has been used to profile and criminalize Black and brown trans women in our communities for simply expressing their gender identity.

This victory was due to the organizing efforts of our members and allies who made thousands of calls to elected officials, organized dozens of rallies and press conferences, and made their voices heard year after year in Albany. ¡Sí se pudo!

Respect and Dignity for All: 2021 State Policy & Budget Platform

As the largest community based membership organization representing immigrants and working-class people of color in New York, Make the Road New York (MRNY) is uniquely positioned to identify and address pressing community needs. 

The communities we represent have been utterly devastated by COVID-19, with staggering loss of life and calamitous economic consequences. Our platform for 2021 thus centers demands for a recovery for all and targeted policy priorities to address inequity and brutality laid bare during 2020 and the pandemic.

Read our Full Platform here.

Executive Order Marks Major Progress for Immigrants

On day one, President Biden signed a number of executive orders. They include revoking the Trump administration’s plan to exclude immigrants from the census count, preserving the DACA program, repealing the Muslim Ban, pausing the construction of the wall on the southern border, extending Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) for Liberians who have been in the United States for many years, and enacting a moratorium on deportations.

These victories are the result of tremendous work by our members and immigrant communities and people of color across the country. We will continue to fight until there is a fair and humane immigration system in place. ¡Sí se puede!

Our Reach

New York City
Long Island

We helped Gladys demand and win critical repairs from her landlord, and in the process, become a tenant advocate and MRNY board co-chair. When she fell seriously ill, we won near-elimination of her massive medical debt.

From our NYC centers in Brooklyn, Queens & Staten Island, we serve immigrants from throughout the 5 boroughs and organize to win policies that benefit millions.

Julio Cesar

When ICE seized Julio Cesar from his Long Island home in a pre-dawn raid, ripping him from his pregnant wife and two small children, Make the Road New York mobilized within minutes to lead a legal challenge and accompanying community campaign that resulted in his release.

Our fastest growing membership base is leading a highly impactful civic engagement program that is helping to make Long Island more equitable.


Ruth came to MRNY seeking help for her two young daughters who were about to be deported after fleeing violence in Guatemala. Our legal team halted the deportation and won a path for Ruth and her daughters to obtain legal permanent residence.

Our newest center in Westchester is expanding critical services for the area’s growing and often isolated immigrant community and uniting families across the state to strengthen our ability to win systemic reforms at the state and national levels.


Antonio joined MRNY in 2010, finding a safe space and the encouragement to raise his voice. After working on multiple issues and becoming a recognized leader in MRNY's youth work, he was offered the opportunity to help open Make the Road Nevada. He rose to the challenge and says his experience "made me realized how crucial MRNV was going to be for those families."

We lead the fight for immigrant rights across the country, working as a powerful bloc with our sister organizations: Make the Road New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and Nevada, as well as our national partner, the Center for Popular Democracy, and their affiliate organizations. We support communities of color across the nation to build the resistance with us.