CURRENT

Career Opportunities

Center for Human Rights - Senior Program Manager (Labor)

The American Bar Association Center for Human Rights (ABA CHR) is seeking a human rights attorney or professional with experience supervising staff attorneys to join its Justice Defenders Program as a Senior Program Manager (SPM). Candidates with substantial experience working on issues pertaining to labor and business and human rights are encouraged to apply. 

1)    Background

The Justice Defenders Program provides pro bono legal assistance to human rights advocates working in difficult environments and vulnerable circumstances by:

  • Advising on, and raising public awareness of, sensitive trials and cases;
  • Connecting pro bono lawyers with requisite expertise with local lawyers to provide advice on international law standards, share best practices, and assist in developing advocacy and litigation strategies; and
  • Observing trials that have garnered local, regional, or international attention and/or have the potential of changing the law, for better or worse, within the country, and providing analysis of those trials.

The Justice Defenders Program’s global reach enables it to help human rights defenders in virtually any country.  The Program is sensitive to varied political and factual circumstances and its assistance is tailored to realities “on the ground.”  With experienced staff and a dynamic network of pro bono lawyers at the ready, the Program can respond rapidly to acute crises or take on long-term projects as needed.

2)    Job Description

The Senior Program Manager (SPM) for Labor will report directly to the Director of the Justice Defenders Program. Responsibilities shall include:

  1. Supervision: The SPM shall supervise program staff across the labor portfolio, including:
    1. Monitoring work plan implementation;
    2. Reviewing monthly and quarterly reports and other aspects of monitoring and evaluation related to the labor portfolio;
    3. Tracking the budget for the labor portfolio;
    4. Ensuring ABA CHR’s goals related to the labor portfolio are being advanced;
    5. Ensuring commitments to funders are being met;
    6. Monitoring compliance with grant award requirements and ABA policies and procedures.
  2. Donor Engagement: Meet with donors and other relevant stakeholders to assess ABA CHR’s standing, to address any issues they might have with the program, and to provide back-up to staff managing these relations.
  3. Grant Research and Writing: In coordination with the Director of the Center for Human Rights, explore and develop new programmatic and financial partnership. Raise funds from third party donors to continue and expand upon the activities related to labor, business, and human rights. Advise and/or participate in/lead development of proposals for potential funders.
  4. Outreach and Maintenance of Thematic Human Rights Defender Network: The SPM shall develop and maintain relationships with human rights advocates abroad working on cases related to labor and, funding permitting, additional business and human rights constituencies. 
  5. Case Management: The SPM shall vet potential cases, conduct preliminary assessments of legal issues, place the case with pro bono counsel, manage the observation of trials, provide strategic guidance on advocacy activities, and coordinate the provision of pro bono legal assistance in labor rights cases that meet the criteria of the Justice Defenders Program.
  6. Research and Writing: The SPM shall conduct legal and other research and write memoranda, speeches, and articles, including for publication.  The SPM shall analyze laws, regulations, policies, and court rules and provide substantive advice and information to the Director.
  7. Counsel: The SPM shall serve as the principal ABA expert on matters related to labor and business and human rights and shall be expected to remain up to date on pertinent developments in regional and international law, politics, and human rights. SPM shall be in contact with government entities and the media.
  8. Programmatic Support Activities:  The SPM will be responsible for website maintenance, social media, contract drafting and management of consultants, reimbursements, management of interns/externs, and other programmatic activities related to the labor portfolio, as required and in coordination with programmatic support staff.
  9. Other duties as assigned: The SPM will be responsible for a range of duties related to case strategy, management, advocacy, and other matters regarding execution of case work and program development.

Currently, staff are not travelling due to the COVID-19 pandemic and restrictions on travel set by ABA policy; however, once travel is authorized, please note that SPMs are expected to travel up to 25% of the time.  SPMs shall be expected to begin immediately, and no later than one (1) month after notification of their successful application.

3)    Qualifications

  • Required qualifications:
    • Bachelor’s degree from a four-year college or university and 7 years of experience, Master’s degree and 5 years of experience, or Doctoral degree (JD, PhD) and 4 years of experience.
    • Experience working with USG funded programs.
    • Experience or knowledge of legal reform issues related to labor, business, and human rights.
    • Fluency in English and at least one additional U.N. language.
    • Management experience.
  • Preferred qualifications:
    • Excellent legal writing and research, analytical, oral and written communications, and organizational skills.
    • Substantial experience in policy analysis.
    • Strong interpersonal skills in a multi-cultural environment with sensitivity and respect for diversity. 
    • Grant writing experience
    • Experience in advocacy on behalf of labor activists and labor rights issues with foreign ministries, corporations, and multilateral institutions
    • Experience working with local counsel to develop strategies for litigation.

4)    Certificates, Licenses, and Registrations

  • Successful candidate must have Bachelor’s degree from a four-year college or university and 7 years of experience, Master’s degree and 5 years of experience, or Doctoral degree (JD, PhD) and 4 years of experience.

5)    Compensation

  • Compensation shall be commensurate with experience.

6)    Application

Center for Human Rights Fellowship

The American Bar Association Center for Human Rights (ABA CHR) accepts applications from law students and recent graduates with secured funding for 50% or more of their salary from a law school, foundation, law firm, or other funding opportunity who are seeking a fellowship host for a postgraduate public interest fellowship.

ABA CHR seeks to host a one-year legal fellowship to support its Justice Defenders Program. Candidates with substantial experience working on issues pertaining to human rights who have already secured outside funding for 50% or more of their salary are encouraged to apply.

1)    Background

The Justice Defenders Program provides pro bono legal assistance to human rights advocates working in difficult environments and vulnerable circumstances by:

  • Advising on, and raising public awareness of, sensitive trials and cases;
  • Connecting pro bono lawyers with requisite expertise with local lawyers to provide advice on international law standards, share best practices, and assist in developing advocacy and litigation strategies; and
  • Observing trials that have garnered local, regional, or international attention and/or have the potential of changing the law, for better or worse, within the country, and providing analysis of those trials.

The Justice Defenders Program’s global reach enables it to help human rights defenders in virtually any country.  The Program is sensitive to varied political and factual circumstances and its assistance is tailored to realities “on the ground.”  With experienced staff and a dynamic network of pro bono lawyers at the ready, the Program can respond rapidly to acute crises or take on long-term projects as needed.

2)    Job Description

Responsibilities shall include:

  1. Undertaking substantive legal work for the Justice Defenders Program and providing substantive support and expertise to Staff Attorneys, working in a collaborative environment with ABA members, ABA staff, and other Fellows. 
  2. Case Management: The Fellow will assist regional staff attorney leads in vetting potential cases, conducting preliminary assessments of legal issues, and coordinating the provision of pro bono legal assistance to at-risk human rights defenders.
  3. Research and Writing: The Fellow will conduct legal and other research and write memoranda, reports, articles and/or technical analyses, including for publication.  The Fellow will analyze laws, regulations, policies, and court rules and provide substantive advice and information on potential cases.
  4. Other duties as assigned:  The Fellow will support regional staff attorneys in a range of duties relating to case strategy, management, advocacy and other matters regarding the execution of case work.
  5. Advancing a technical or process innovation aimed at improving the provision of legal services internationally.
  6. Contributing to the advancement of the Center's goals. 
  7. Helping to brainstorm and advance assigned project(s).
  8. Proposing individual projects or cases and developing legal and advocacy strategies to pursue identified projects and cases in collaboration with regional staff attorney leads.
  9. Fellows shall be expected to begin no later than September 2021. This is a one-year fellowship position.

3)    Qualifications

  • Required Qualifications:
    • Possession of a Juris Doctorate from an ABA-accredited law school by start date of fellowship.
  • Preferred qualifications:
    • A track record of innovative approaches to the provision of legal services in the United States and internationally, and basic knowledge of legal tech.
    • Must have practiced law less than five years.
    • 0 – 3 years legal experience
    • Outstanding legal writing and research skills.
    • Excellent organizational, communication, and analytical skills
    • Ability to exercise independent judgement
    • Strong interpersonal skills in a multi-cultural environment with sensitivity and respect for diversity. 
    • Foreign language fluency in Arabic, French, Spanish, or Russian preferred. 
    • Active bar admission is not required for this fellowship, although it is preferred that the fellow have or be in the process of obtaining an active bar admission in at least one jurisdiction.

4)    Certificates, Licenses, Registrations

  • Successful candidate must have a JD. Active bar admission is not required for this fellowship, although it is preferred that the fellow have or be in the process of obtaining an active bar admission in at least one jurisdiction.

5)    Physical Requirements

  • Typical office work environment

6)    Extent of Travel Required in the Job

  • Currently, staff are not travelling due to the COVID-19 pandemic; however, once travel is authorized, as a normal course of business, this job will typically require travel less than 5% of the time.   

7)    Compensation

  • Applicants must have secured funding for at least 50% of their salary from a law school, foundation, or law firm and must indicate funding source in application materials. ABA CHR will cover up to 50% of salary and all fringe expenses.

8)    How to Apply

Pro Bono Legal Consultancies

The American Bar Association Center for Human Rights seeks experienced pro bono legal consultants on a recurring basis. Pro bono consultants contribute to the work of the Center by

  • Observing trials that have garnered local, regional, or international attention and providing detailed analysis of those trials;
  • Drafting letters to U.N. Special Rapporteurs pertaining to attacks against human rights defenders and rule of law around the world; 
  • Assisting with the preparation of reports and conducting libel review.

Interested candidates should fill out the pro bono volunteer form and submit a recent resume/CV. Candidates with foreign language proficiency are encouraged to apply.