State Policy Fellowship

08 Mar, 2021


State Policy Fellowship

True Colors United
Washington, DC/New York, NY


Co-founded by Cyndi Lauper, True Colors United implements innovative solutions to youth homelessness by focusing on the unique experiences of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning (LGBTQ) youth. Through an array of training & education, advocacy, technical assistance, and youth action programs, True Colors United is ensuring that every LGBTQ young person, wherever they live, is celebrated for being their authentic selves.

Fellowship Description

True Colors United is seeking a State Policy Fellow for a one-year placement on a collaborative team at a fast-growing organization committed to social justice, racial and LGBTQ equity, and elevating the voices and leadership of people with lived experience of homelessness. This is an exciting opportunity to gain extensive hands-on advocacy experience within a national non-profit organization and make a real difference in the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning (LGBTQ) youth experiencing homelessness across the country.

The Fellow will work with True Colors United’s Advocacy team along with state advocates and young people with lived experience to advance state-level policies that advance housing justice for youth and young adults experiencing homelessness. This fellowship is a great opportunity for state-level advocates and campaigners to make the transition to national-level work by managing a multi-state portfolio under the direction of a supervisor with an appreciation for the nuances of state policy and politics.


Reporting to the Public Policy & External Affairs Director, the Fellow will:

  • Implement True Colors United’s state administrative and legislative public policy agenda
  • Lead outreach related to and support the research and drafting of the State Index on Youth Homelessness, an annual report that evaluates all 50 states and the District of Columbia on their efforts to prevent and end youth homelessness.
  • Engage/lobby state legislatures and relevant committees, governor’s offices, and relevant state agencies on True Colors United’s state public policy priorities pertaining to youth homelessness and LGBTQ and racial equity.
  • Conduct research, writing, and policy analysis to determine legislative and/or regulatory impact on True Colors United’s policy priorities.
  • Create facts sheets, sign-on letters, and other resources to effectively message and disseminate True Colors United’s policy priorities to the broader public.
  • Craft and negotiate language for legislation, draft comments on administrative regulations, and author substantive issue briefs and position papers.
  • Work with the True Colors United’s communications staff to educate and engage the public about housing justice for young people through the lens of racial and LGBTQ+ equity.
  • Maintain and develop relationships with contacts in legislative, executive, and administrative offices in state governments, as well as with allied and opposition groups.

Minimum Qualifications

  • 2-4 years professional experience in advocacy, campaign, or government policy-making roles
  • Demonstrated commitment to racial and LGBTQ+ equity, and ending youth homelessness
  • Demonstrated skill set with consensus building and navigating complex situations and conversations
  • Experience advancing policy in state legislative or state administrative settings
  • Experience conducting policy research and producing policy analysis or writing.
  • Experience working with local, state, or national partners on policy efforts to end youth homelessness and/or to advance racial and LGBTQ+ equity, housing justice, or the legal rights of youth
  • Experience building or working in coalitions
  • Knowledge of the legislative process and the components of a robust legislative advocacy campaign
  • Detail-oriented and adept at multitasking and planning
  • Willing to travel several times per year
  • Willing to work remotely when necessary
  • Willing to adapt, take risks, and embrace mistakes as opportunities to learn
  • Comfortable working with various web-based systems

Preferred Qualifications

  • Experience working with youth and young adult partners
  • Experience working on political campaigns or issue advocacy campaigns in the US South
  • Competency in policy issue areas related to youth homelessness, including child welfare, juvenile and criminal legal system, and poverty

More Information

This is not an entry level opportunity. True Colors United is prepared to offer an attractive compensation package. In addition to a competitive base salary, we offer health insurance, retirement, life insurance, and vacation benefits. If selected to take part in the interview process, the salary range for the position will be provided prior to the interview taking place.

During the pandemic, this position will be remote. Post-pandemic, it will likely be based out of True Colors United’s Washington, D.C. office, with the possibility of working in our New York City office. Candidates outside of NY and DC are still encouraged to apply, as the organization is exploring the possibility of post-pandemic remote work.

True Colors United is an Equal Opportunity Employer. We strongly encourage people of color, people of diverse gender identities, women, and people with lived experiences of homelessness to apply.

Please submit a one page cover letter and resume to In your cover letter, please highlight in particular why you would believe the State Policy Fellowship is the right opportunity for you.

To learn more, please visit

Job posted: 2021-03-08