About David Elliot

Communications Director
Coalition on Human Needs

David Elliot joined CHN as Communications Director in 2016 and has 20 years of experience engaging in communications advocacy in the nonprofit world. He served as communications director for the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty (2001-2008); for USAction (2008-2013); and most recently for Fair Share, a part of The Public Interest Network. Prior to his career in nonprofit advocacy, David worked as a newspaper reporter in the state capitol bureau of the Austin American-Statesman. He covered state politics and the Texas Legislature. He was recognized for outstanding coverage by the Associated Press Managing Editors Convention for his article A Day in the Death of Inmate No. 918, an eyewitness account of an execution in Texas. He also was honored by the Center for Public Policy Priorities and the Texas State Conference of NAACP Branches. When he isn’t working, David enjoys reading historical fiction, travelling to warm and sunny locales, and following his beloved Texas Longhorns and Washington Nationals.

This is not America as we know it


June 13, 2018

Hundreds of activists and community organizers from across the United States rallied in Washington, D.C. Wednesday to protest the Trump Administration’s new policy of separating immigrant children from their parents at U.S. borders. Among the speakers was Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-WA, who is believed to be the only member of Congress to have met recently Read More »

Categories: Immigration


‘Puerto Rico wasn’t destroyed by Hurricane Maria. Puerto Rico was destroyed decades and decades ago.’


June 12, 2018

Puerto Rico’s battered infrastructure has made it more difficult to deliver social services to those most in need, including impoverished women who are at risk of domestic violence and sexual assault. That’s the finding of Vilma González-Castro, a women’s rights and domestic violence activist who has worked to try to improve the delivery of social Read More »

Categories: Disaster Relief, Health, Hurricane Maria

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As hurricane season begins, a new death toll in Puerto Rico. And an island woefully unprepared for what may come.


June 1, 2018

4,645. And counting. That’s the new number of estimated deaths of U.S. citizens in Puerto Rico directly or indirectly linked to Hurricane Maria, according to a new study published in the New England Journal of Medicine. The new estimate is more than 70 times the official death toll of 64. And it coincides with the Read More »

Categories: Budget and Appropriations, Disaster Relief, Hurricane Harvey, Hurricane Maria

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Consumer protections from payday lenders survive – for now


May 18, 2018

The Trump Administration, payday lenders, and their allies in Congress have been working for some time now to roll back protections designed by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) to restrict the predatory practice of payday lending. Today consumer advocates are celebrating, at least for now. Here’s why: last night, the legislative clock expired when Read More »

Categories: Payday lending


Why work requirements won’t work


April 26, 2018

28-year-old “Jerry” is a white male, divorced with two sons, and a high school dropout. He began drinking alcohol and using marijuana when he was 14, and by age of 19 had expanded his addiction to include heroin, pills, and cocaine. He’s failed twice to complete inpatient treatment programs, one of which cost his family Read More »

Categories: Health, Medicaid, Opioids

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“Welcome to Puerto Rico, this is what we know as ‘life’


April 19, 2018

Puerto Rico once again was plunged into darkness earlier this week after a power blackout affected almost every islander, nearly seven months after Hurricane Maria caused havoc and fury. The blackout served as a reminder that Congress has yet to appropriate the funding the U.S. island needs to fully repair its infrastructure, including its power Read More »

Categories: Disaster Relief

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Six months after Maria


March 20, 2018

Tuesday, March 20 marks six months since Hurricane Maria wreaked havoc on Puerto Rico, killing more than 1,000 people, destroying tens of thousands of homes, darkening much of the island for months, cutting access to clean water and uprooting the lives of millions of U.S. citizens. Today protesters will gather in Washington, D.C. to denounce Read More »

Categories: Budget and Appropriations, Disaster Relief, Housing and Homelessness

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Left behind after Hurricane Maria: Puerto Rico’s Children


March 19, 2018

Even before Hurricane Maria battered Puerto Rico with historic, sustained, 155-mile-per-hour winds, the U.S. island was facing an economic catastrophe of unprecedented magnitude. For more than a decade, following a disastrous, U.S.-enforced tax policy that took effect around 2006, Puerto Rico shed jobs, suffered a loss of economic vitality, and saw such a significant increase Read More »

Categories: Budget and Appropriations, Disaster Relief, Early Childhood Education, Education and Youth Policy, Food and Nutrition, Health, Housing and Homelessness, Medicaid

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“Dear National Rifle Association: We Won’t Let You Win. From, Teenagers.”


March 14, 2018

Students from coast to coast walked out of school today, with many observing 17 minutes of silence in memory of the 17 victims of the most recent mass school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. The National School Walkout was loosely organized by EMPOWER, the youth branch of the Women’s March.  Read More »

Categories: gun violence


Rallying for the Dreamers


March 5, 2018

Dreamers and their advocates gathered Monday in at least a dozen communities throughout the U.S. as a Trump-imposed six-month deadline for resolving their immigration status came and went with no action from Congress. In Washington, D.C., advocates flooded Capitol Hill to pressure lawmakers to reach a deal – and it was by no means the Read More »

Categories: Deportation, Immigration

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