CPI | Center on Policy Initiatives

Contact Information

3727 Camino del Rio South
Suite 100
San Diego
CA
92108
(619) 584-5744, Ext. 27

Our Mission

The Center on Policy Initiatives is a nonprofit research and advocacy center dedicated to the interests of working people in the San Diego region. Through research, community organizing and public education, we seek policy changes that promote economic justice and strengthen the middle class.

CPI works to end working poverty by building a fair economy in which good jobs with healthcare coverage allow all working people to live with dignity. We help strengthen communities through responsible development, affordable housing, child care, reliable public transportation, parks and other shared benefits.

Our Vision

We envision local government as an effective champion for the common good, and hope to enable residents of moderate-income communities to have an informed and powerful voice in decisions affecting their quality of life.

We envision local government as an effective champion for the common good, and hope to enable residents of moderate-income communities to have an informed and powerful voice in decisions affecting their quality of life.

Our Work

CPI’s research and analysis on poverty, healthcare, affordable housing and local government has shaped public debate for the last 10 years. It is regularly sought by local and state policymakers on the economy, local government and redevelopment.

CPI has developed innovative model policies to reform and improve government services.

CPI was the driving force behind San Diego’s Living Wage Ordinance, which was passed by the City Council in 2005. This ordinance guarantees a decent wage and healthcare benefits for employees of companies doing business with the city.

CPI won Responsible Contracting language that requires businesses that work with the City be good corporate citizens and bans those with histories of fraud or theft from working with the city.

The Service Worker Retention Ordinance, passed in 2005, protects workers who provide contracted City services from losing their jobs when a contract changes hands.

News Articles

Partnership for Working Families | August 18, 2014

Today San Diego City Council President Todd Gloria and his colleagues stood up for 280,000 San Diegans who lack sick leave and nearly 200,000 people who work hard every day and can’t afford rent and groceries.

Partnership for Working Families | April 17, 2014

Hundreds of San Diegans came out to show their support for the announcement in Civic Center Plaza under the banner of “Raise Up San Diego,” a broad-based community coalition that includes the Center on Policy Initiatives.

Center on Policy Initiatives | December 19, 2012

After more than a year of advocacy by the Center on Policy Initiatives (CPI) and community allies, San Diego has a new ordinance requiring banks to register all foreclosures and be held accountable if they neglect the properties. On Tuesday, Dec. 18, new Mayor Bob Filner made the Property Value Protection Ordinance the first ordinance he signed into law.

Center on Policy Initiatives | December 18, 2012

With a new mayor taking office December 3, Center on Policy Initiatives (CPI) helped set the tone for shifting San Diego's traditionally developer-centered policy agenda to a focus on fighting working poverty. On December 4, we started a two-week campaign to get 500 San Diegans to send letters to the new mayor urging him to "Make Poverty a Priority."

Partnership for Working Families | December 14, 2012

The Partnership is bringing light to the waste and recycling industry’s potential to be a powerful channel for good jobs and green development. At the annual Economic Analysis and Research Network (EARN) conference the week of December 10, we organized a workshop to share strategies our network has developed to transform the industry in a way that builds strong local economies.

Center on Policy Initiatives | September 11, 2012

In San Diego, Center on Policy Initiatives' long battle to prevent privatization of the city’s Miramar Landfill ended in July, when city workers won a direct competition to keep their jobs.

Partnership for Working Families | July 31, 2012

OCCORD’s campaign to make Santa Ana city government more accountable is blazing hot! As one of the leaders of the Santa Ana Collaborative for Responsible Development (SACReD) Coalition, OCCORD has taken major steps toward passage of a “Sunshine Ordinance.” The Coalition’s effort has attracted plenty of attention.

...On July 2, the campaign won a major victory, with the Santa Ana City Council unanimously approving the campaign’s Sunshine Ordinance platform and instructing the City Attorney to draft an ordinance.

Partnership for Working Families | March 30, 2012

The Partnership congratulates four members of our network who were selected as winners of the REVERB spring grants program. An initiative of the Progressive Technology Project, REVERB is designed to help social justice organizations develop effective ways to align their organizing, communications, and technology efforts.

Center on Policy Initiatives | December 18, 2009

CPI released a report in September linking quality apprenticeship programs in the building trades to the future of California's green economy and economic recovery.

The report, Construction Apprenticeship Programs: Career Training for California's Recovery, demonstrates that apprenticeship training is most effective when run collaboratively by labor and management.

Center on Policy Initiatives | August 28, 2008

By Susan Duerksen, CPI Communications Director

The Center on Policy Initiatives (CPI) celebrated an important victory in July, when the San Diego City Council approved several reforms we proposed to protect against some of the worst risks of privatization. These reforms will help make sure private contractors can't take over city functions by scrimping on worker health coverage in the quality of services.

Employment Opportunities

  • The Center on Policy Initiatives is seeking a skilled, flexible communications professional to join our team. If you are a perfectionist writer/editor with a flair for social media, website proficiency, and a deep commitment to economic justice and racial justice for working people and diverse communities, please apply! We need a communicator who has a demonstrated ability to create powerful, clear, and strategic messages and disseminate them effectively using a wide range of communications tools and technology.

  • Position Description & Responsibilities

    CPI seeks a dynamic Deputy Director to oversee the development and operation of campaigns and programs and to coordinate our strategic programmatic initiatives. The Deputy Directory will report to the Executive Director and will directly supervise program and campaign staff. Experience as an organizer, who has successfully built coalitions for issue campaigns, is strongly preferred.

  • The Center on Policy Initiatives has been at the forefront of the economic justice movement in San Diego since 1997. CPI is a nonprofit research and action institute dedicated to advancing economic equity for diverse communities throughout the San Diego region. CPI works to increase access to good jobs and quality healthcare, and to improve conditions for low-wage workers and families.

  • The Center on Policy Initiatives is a research and action institute dedicated to creating economic prosperity, sustainable communities and a healthy environment for all. CPI serves a unique role in the San Diego region providing the analysis, policy solutions, education and alliances that advance social and economic justice.

    Founded in 1997, the Center on Policy Initiatives has been at the forefront of the economic justice movement in San Diego. CPI works to increase access to good jobs and to improve conditions for low‐wage workers and their families. The organization envisions local government as an effective champion for the common good, and works to enable residents of all communities to have an informed and powerful voice in decisions affecting their quality of life.

    CPI seeks an organizing director. The successful candidate must have a strong commitment to social and economic equity; collaborating with diverse community and worker organizations; and conducting effective organizing, outreach and the promotion of a comprehensive policy program.