Emily "Em" Balkan
Em is passionate about eradicating systemic injustice and further merging policymaking and the social work profession. Em is a Senior Policy Analyst in New York City Council’s Legislative Division, and works with the Council’s Committees on Health and Hospitals. In their role, Em assists with developing health policy to govern New York City, such as Int 0954-2018, a Local Law which created a third gender marker option on birth certificates for those who do not identify as female or male. In addition, Em drafts and finalizes resolutions, prepares materials for City Council hearings, and meets with Council Members, advocates, and experts to ensure the City passes equitable and helpful legislation.
Prior to joining the Council, Em was a Senior Policy & Client Services Associate at the Medicare Rights Center, where they advocated for older adults and people with disabilities, and specialized in assisting and advocating for those with long-term care health needs. Em was actively involved in efforts to push back against the Trump Administration’s efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, and advocated at the City and State level for health care programs benefiting New Yorkers.
They received both their Bachelor of Science in Social Work and Masters in Social Work from New York University.