Job Description
Job Title Senior Associate - Human Rights Defenders Program
Job ID 648262
Begin Date 1/3/13
Location Washington,  DC
Other Location
Description Working with activists around the world, Human Rights First advocates for policies and practices by the U.S. government and international community that protect and promote human rights defenders and their work, in accordance with the 1998 U.N. Declaration on Human Rights Defenders. We amplify the voices of human rights defenders in foreign policy debates and promote greater understanding about the crucial role they play in fighting for universal rights and fundamental freedoms. We promote policies and practices so human rights defenders can work openly and freely. These efforts include advocating to the U.S. Department of State to publicly adopt guidelines on its engagement with human rights defenders worldwide. We bring the cases of individual human rights defenders at risk to the attention of the international community. We also coordinate with the NGO community to provide support and services to defenders facing threats to their lives and livelihoods.

The Senior Associate is responsible for devising, planning, coordinating, and executing strategies for influencing U.S. human rights policy on the range of issues covered by Human Rights First’s Human Rights Defenders (HRD) program. He/She also plays a key role in formulating and achieving Human Rights Defenders program goals and objectives; fostering relationships with human rights advocates, nongovernmental organizations, and the U.S. government; conducting advocacy; engaging in research; developing recommendations, reports, website content, press materials, and other documents; developing specific projects; assisting in efforts to raise funds to support the program; and supervising interns.

·Advocate for human rights defender issues in one or more focus countries, developing and maintaining close working relationships with defenders in those countries.

·Develop and maintain relationships with other NGOs, both in the United States and internationally, to ensure effective and timely responses to threats to human rights defenders as they arise, in accordance with the priorities of the program.

·Engage in both written and oral advocacy directed at those in the U.S. government responsible for the decisions necessary to achieve our objectives, including but not limited to initiating, passing and implementing legislation, and developing and implementing agency policies, priorities and practices.

·Analyze policies and practices of the United States and other governments as well as intergovernmental organizations affecting human rights defenders’ freedom of expression and association, and develop specific legal and practical recommendations to strengthen protections of these rights.

·Analyze political and other factors to determine feasible blueprints and/or roadmaps for changing laws, policies, and practices to achieve the program’s advocacy objectives.

·Produce advocacy documents, including fact sheets, talking points, charts, and other materials - in consultation with the Senior Advocacy Strategist - that advance the program’s advocacy objectives.

·Monitor legal, political, and academic developments across relevant areas involving core HRD program concerns and identify emerging opportunities for engagement by the program. 

·Share information with and represent the positions of the organization to courts, legislators, government officials, representatives of international and nongovernmental organizations, media, and the general public via reports, memoranda, briefs, and other written materials, as well as in meetings, conferences, symposia, and other venues.

·Work with Human Rights First program staff to identify and respond to situations in focus countries where defenders’ freedom of expression and association are threatened.

·Work closely with staff in Human Rights First’s Communications department to help shape and inform the production and dissemination of advocacy and public education materials and the development of website content in accordance with the communications strategy to achieve program and organizational objectives.  

·Develop and maintain relations with media representatives in the geographic or thematic area of focus.    

Other Duties:
·Assist with the development of the HRD program’s strategic objectives and annual work plans.

·Support fundraising efforts through grant proposal and report writing and editing and, in coordination with Development department, through outreach to key donors and foundations.

·Work closely with other programs to develop, as appropriate, projects that advance the goals and objectives of the organization as a whole as well as the Human Rights Defenders program.

·Support regular activities of the program such as selecting award honorees, holding public events and conferences, and activities surrounding the annual human rights award dinner.

EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS:  Law and/or another advanced degree in a discipline related to international human rights.

ANNUAL SALARY:  Competitive with comprehensive benefits package

START DATE:  Immediately

SUBMISSION DEADLINE:  January 25, 2013.  Applications will be considered on a rolling basis.

Please complete the online application found at our website under ABOUT US / JOB OPPORTUNITIES links.
You will be requested to provide:
·       Resume (upload)
·       Cover letter (secondary upload*)
·       Writing sample (secondary upload*)
·       Names and contact details for three (3) references (enter online)

* After completing the initial application and uploading your resume, please select VIEW PROFILE and UPLOAD ATTACHMENT to upload additional documents.  You can also log into your profile from the top of the Job Opportunities page.  When logged into your profile, you can upload cover letter, writing sample, and any other relevant documents by selecting UPLOAD ATTACHMENT at the top of the page. 

Applicants will receive a confirmation email with their username and password once they’ve created a profile.  Please keep this information to access your application and make changes at any time.

Only selected applicants will be contacted for phone or in-person interviews.  NO PHONE CALLS, PLEASE.

Human Rights First is a non-profit, nonpartisan international human rights organization based in New York and Washington DC. We build respect for human rights and the rule of law to help ensure the dignity to which everyone is entitled and to stem intolerance, tyranny, and violence.

Human Rights First is committed to recruiting, retaining, developing, and promoting staff across all programs and departments from a diversity of backgrounds, including members of racial and ethnic minorities, LGBTI people, people with disabilities, people of all socioeconomic backgrounds, people of all nationalities, and veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces. We believe that a diverse staff and an inclusive work environment that welcomes a range of perspectives help make our advocacy work stronger and more effective.
Required Skills ·Experience engaging in legislative and/or policy advocacy with the U.S. government;

·Strong understanding of U.S. government decision-making processes, and sound policy judgment;

· A minimum of five years of relevant professional human rights experience;

·Strong interpersonal skills and demonstrated ability to foster relationships with human rights advocates, nongovernmental organizations, and the U.S. government;

·Expertise in at least one country or region of the world with an understanding of the human rights issues and political dynamics in that region (regions would include Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, Latin America, or the former Soviet Union);

·Willingness to travel internationally;

·Excellent written and oral advocacy skills and a demonstrated ability to translate highly technical material for a variety of audiences and effectively edit the work of others;

·Track record of conducting human rights advocacy and achieving clearly defined objectives through the use of both legal and non-legal strategies;

·Understanding of international human rights law and enforcement mechanisms (both regional and international);

·Excellent project management skills, capacity to take initiative, to finish assignments under pressure and to work collegially with others;

·Understanding of international and regional political policy-making structures and institutions; and

·Ability to work comfortably in a variety of settings, including legal, academic, and governmental.

·Experience promoting and protecting human rights in diverse international environments;

·Expertise in issues relating to religious freedom;

·Experience working with U.S. embassies, in-country partners and/or volunteer attorneys;

·Experience working with the press to achieve advocacy goals; and

·Fluency in a language other than English.
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