Charity Review

Issued: May 2016 Expires: May 2018

Charity Seal Holder

Unique People Services, Inc.

Meets Standards
 
(718) 231-7711 4234 Vireo Avenue, Bronx NY 10470-2412 www.uniquepeopleservices.org
  1. Conclusions
  2. Purpose
  3. Programs
  4. Governance & Staff
  5. Fund Raising
  6. Tax Status
  7. Financial
Conclusions

Unique People Services, Inc. meets the 20 Standards for Charity Accountability.

Purpose

Unique People Services' mission is to serve, holistically and without judgement, those who may have been denied compassionate and considerate treatment elsewhere due to their race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, developmental level, health status, or criminal or substance abuse history. We are dedicated to providing a home and supportive services to persons with special and challenging needs - men and women we consider to be members of our family. Our staff strives to make these homes the warmest, safest and most welcoming environments in which to live.

Incorporated: 1991 in NY

Programs

Since 1991, UPS has grown from a 10 bed Intermediate Care Facility for the developmentally disabled in the Bronx to our current multifaceted 21 supportive housing programs in the Bronx, Manhattan and Queens. Each year we provide services for over 700 individuals with more than 500 living within one of our residences. They receive meals and other support services that include case management, recreational services and nutritional counseling focusing on achieving the highest possible level of independent living. We offer both transitional and permanent housing for formerly homeless individuals living with HIV/AIDS, long term and permanent housing for formerly homeless individuals with a mental illness and permanent housing for adults with developmental disabilities. Our HIV/AIDS transitional housing programs help residents stabilize their lives, assist them in securing entitlements and refer them to permanent housing. Referrals are also made for medical and psychological care and substance abuse counseling. Our HIV/AIDS transitional housing programs, located in the Bronx and Manhattan, accommodate 73 individuals. Through our permanent and supportive housing programs, up to 229 formerly homeless single persons and families are housed in scatter site apartments in the Bronx, Manhattan and Queens. Our Bainbridge Care Coordination Program is a partnership formed in 2009 with Montefiore Medical Center AIDS Center in the Bronx. We assist up to 180 individuals who are newly diagnosed with HIV/AIDS or have refused to receive care consistently during the previous nine months, to ensure they are educated about their disease, supported with medication management and connected or reconnected with consistent medical care in a timely and coordinated manner. Treatment and housing for individuals with serious and persistent mental illnesses in New York State has moved away from hospitals and into the community. UPS is helping to address this need within the community through its five mental health housing programs in the Bronx. We operate two Community Residence Single Room Occupancy facilities (Haven Apartments and John G. Hunter Apartments) that provide services to 98 formerly homeless mentally ill men and women. For those who are capable of living in a more independent setting, UPS operates three Supported Housing Programs (II, III & IV) which provide permanent housing to 68 formerly homeless mentally ill men and women and their families. Unique People Services operates nine programs in the Bronx and Queens that provide housing and supportive services to 47 adults with developmental disabilities.

Governance & Staff

Board Chair: Crystal E. Jackson, SVP, Nonprofit Financial Services Group Business Affiliation: Citi

CEO: Ms. Yvette Brisett-Andre Compensation:* $218,859

Board Size: 8

Staff: 221

* Compensation includes annual salary and, if applicable, benefit plans, expense accounts and other allowances.
Fund Raising
Method(s) used: Direct Mail Appeals Invitations to Fundraising Events Print Advertisements (Newspapers, Magazines, etc.) Grant Proposals Internet Appeals Planned Giving Arrangements

% of Related Contributions on Fundraising: 0.27%

Tax Status

This organization is tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. It is eligible to receive contributions deductible as charitable donations for federal income tax purposes.

Financial

The following information is based on Unique People Services, Inc. Consolidated Audited Financial Statements for the fiscal year ending Tuesday, June 30, 2015.

Source of Funds
Medicaid Income $6,458,355
Government Grant Income $11,584,360
Participant Fees $1,778,392
Contributions $69,184
Special Events $100,612
Other Revenues $253,415
Total Income: $20,244,318
 
Fusion Chart
 
Program Expenses: $18,067,600
Fundraising Expenses: $31,587
Administrative Expenses: $1,896,275
Total Expenses: $19,995,462
 
Income in Excess of Expenses: $248,856
 
Beginning Net Assets: $5,598,610
Ending Net Assets: $5,810,182
Total Liabilities: $11,198,558
Total Assets: $17,008,740


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Standards Legend

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Standard 1: Board Oversight


Description:

Organizations shall have a board of directors that provides adequate oversight of the charity's operations and its staff. Indication of adequate oversight includes, but is not limited to, regularly scheduled appraisals of the CEO's performance, evidence of disbursement controls such as board approval of the budget, fund raising practices, establishment of a conflict of interest policy, and establishment of accounting procedures sufficient to safeguard charity finances.

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Standard 2: Board Size


Description:

Soliciting organizations shall have a board of directors with a minimum of five voting members.

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Standard 3: Board Meetings


Description:

An organization shall have a minimum of three evenly spaced meetings per year of the full governing body with a majority in attendance, with face-to-face participation. A conference call of the full board can substitute for one of the three meetings of the governing body. For all meetings, alternative modes of participation are acceptable for those with physical disabilities.

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Standard 4: Board Compensation


Description:

Not more than one or 10% (whichever is greater) directly or indirectly compensated person(s) serving as voting member(s) of the board. Compensated members shall not serve as the board's chair or treasurer.

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Standard 5: Conflict of Interest


Description:

No transaction(s) in which any board or staff members have material conflicting interests with the charity resulting from any relationship or business affiliation. Factors that will be considered when concluding whether or not a related party transaction constitutes a conflict of interest and if such a conflict is material, include, but are not limited to: any arm's length procedures established by the charity; the size of the transaction relative to like expenses of the charity; whether the interested party participated in the board vote on the transaction; if competitive bids were sought and whether the transaction is one-time, recurring or ongoing.

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Standard 6: Effectiveness Policy


Description:

Have a board policy of assessing, no less than every two years, the organization's performance and effectiveness and of determining future actions required to achieve its mission.

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Standard 7: Effectiveness Report


Description:

Submit to the organization's governing body, for its approval, a written report that outlines the results of the aforementioned performance and effectiveness assessment and recommendations for future actions.

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Standard 8: Program Expenses


Description:

Spend at least 65% of its total expenses on program activities.

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Standard 9: Fund Raising Expenses


Description:

Spending should be no more than 35% of related contributions on fund raising. Related contributions include donations, legacies, and other gifts received as a result of fund raising efforts.

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Standard 10: Accumulating Funds


Description:

Avoid accumulating funds that could be used for current program activities. To meet this standard, the charity's unrestricted net assets available for use should not be more than three times the size of the past year's expenses or three times the size of the current year's budget, whichever is higher.

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Standard 11: Audit Report


Description:

Make available to all, on request, complete annual financial statements prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. When total annual gross income exceeds $500,000, these statements should be audited in accordance with generally accepted auditing standards. For charities whose annual gross income is less than $500,000, a review by a certified public accountant is sufficient to meet this standard. For charities whose annual gross income is less than $250,000, an internally produced, complete financial statement is sufficient to meet this standard.

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Standard 12: Detailed Expense Breakdown


Description:

Include in the financial statements a breakdown of expenses (e.g., salaries, travel, postage, etc.) that shows what portion of these expenses was allocated to program, fund raising, and administrative activities. If the charity has more than one major program category, the schedule should provide a breakdown for each category.

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Standard 13: Accurate Expense Reporting


Description:

Accurately report the charity's expenses, including any joint cost allocations, in its financial statements. For example, audited or unaudited statements which inaccurately claim zero fund raising expenses or otherwise understate the amount a charity spends on fund raising, and/or overstate the amount it spends on programs will not meet this standard.

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Standard 14: Budget Plan


Description:

Have a board-approved annual budget for its current fiscal year, outlining projected expenses for major program activities, fund raising, and administration.

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Standard 15: Truthful Materials


Description:

Have solicitations and informational materials, distributed by any means, that are accurate, truthful and not misleading, both in whole and in part. Appeals that omit a clear description of program(s) for which contributions are sought will not meet this standard. A charity should also be able to substantiate that the timing and nature of its expenditures are in accordance with what is stated, expressed, or implied in the charity's solicitations.

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Standard 16: Annual Report


Description:

Have an annual report available to all, on request, that includes: (a) the organization's mission statement, (b) a summary of the past year's program service accomplishments, (c) a roster of the officers and members of the board of directors, (d) financial information that includes (i) total income in the past fiscal year, (ii) expenses in the same program, fund raising and administrative categories as in the financial statements, and (iii) ending net assets.

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Standard 17: Website Disclosures


Description:

Include on any charity websites that solicit contributions, the same information that is recommended for annual reports, as well as the mailing address of the charity and electronic access to its most recent IRS Form 990.

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Standard 18: Donor Privacy


Description:

Address privacy concerns of donors by (a) providing in written appeals, at least annually, a means (e.g., such as a check off box) for both new and continuing donors to inform the charity if they do not want their name and address shared outside the organization, (b) providing a clear, prominent and easily accessible privacy policy on any of its websites that tells visitors (i) what information, if any, is being collected about them by the charity and how this information will be used, (ii) how to contact the charity to review personal information collected and request corrections, (iii) how to inform the charity (e.g., a check off box) that the visitor does not wish his/her personal information to be shared outside the organization, and (iv) what security measures the charity has in place to protect personal information.

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Standard 19: Cause Marketing Disclosures


Description:

Clearly disclose how the charity benefits from the sale of products or services (i.e., cause-related marketing) that state or imply that a charity will benefit from a consumer sale or transaction. Such promotions should disclose, at the point of solicitation: (a) the actual or anticipated portion of the purchase price that will benefit the charity (e.g., 5 cents will be contributed to abc charity for every xyz company product sold), (b) the duration of the campaign (e.g., the month of October), (c) any maximum or guaranteed minimum contribution amount (e.g., up to a maximum of $200,000).

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Standard 20: Complaints


Description:

Respond promptly to and act on complaints brought to its attention by the BBB Wise Giving Alliance and/or local Better Business Bureaus about fund raising practices, privacy policy violations and/or other issues.