Please send cover letter, resume, brief writing sample (3-5 pages) and three references to firstname.lastname@example.org with the words: Attention: Lead Community Organizer Position. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Please mention in your cover letter where you saw this advertisement. Visit us to learn more at www.nylpi.org.
Application deadline April 3, 2017
New York Lawyers for the Public Interest (NYLPI) is seeking applications for a Lead Community Organizer in its Disability Justice program. The Lead Community Organizer will be dedicated to launching and coordinating a City-wide advocacy campaign for improvements to the Access-A-Ride program, New York City’s alternate transportation system for people with disabilities.
This is a two-year position funded by a grant to support efforts to transform Access-A-Ride, with the second year subject to funding renewal. The organizer will lead a coordinated, city-wide effort to reach people with disabilities and their allies in every neighborhood, and to energize advocates to work collaboratively to demand a better paratransit system. This project fills a critical gap in organizing around transportation for people with disabilities in New York City.
Background on NYLPI and its Disability Justice Program
Founded 40 years ago, New York Lawyers for the Public Interest (“NYLPI”) pursues equality and justice for all New Yorkers. NYLPI’s community-driven approach powers its work in the areas of civil rights and health, disability, immigrant, and environmental justice. NYLPI seeks lasting change through legal representation, community organizing, policy advocacy, pro bono service, litigation, and public education.
The Disability Justice Program is founded on principles of equality of opportunity, self- determination, and independence for people with disabilities. In partnership with community organizations, we advocate for the rights of New Yorkers with disabilities to equal access to a variety of critical services, including transportation, education, health care, housing, public accommodations and government services. Our work includes advocacy on behalf of persons with mobility impairments, mental illness, developmental disabilities, communication impairments, and visual impairments, as well as advocacy on behalf of those within the disability community with limited English proficiency.
Lead Community Organizer Position Description
The Lead Community Organizer will be an integral part of the Disability Justice team, working to launch and coordinate a City-wide advocacy campaign for improvements to the Access-A- Ride program.
The Lead Community Organizer will serve as the project coordinator for a City-wide organizing campaign, with responsibility for coordinating the inter-related work of NYLPI and three other organizations. The Lead Community Organizer will provide guidance and support to two
additional community organizers funded and dedicated to the same Access-A-Ride campaign, who are being hired separately by two of NYLPI’s peer disability rights organizations, the Brooklyn Center for Independence of the Disabled (BCID) and the Center for Independence of the Disabled in New York (CIDNY). The three organizers will meet regularly and collaborate on this project, coordinating joint clinics, policy advocacy, and lobbying efforts. The three organizers will work in tandem to build an advocacy infrastructure to improve Access-A-Ride.
The Lead Community Organizer will work both independently and in collaboration with other NYLPI community organizers, staff attorneys, social workers, advocates, and media and lobbying consultants. The organizer will also work with other staff members at BCID, CIDNY, and MFY Legal Services, which is also a grant recipient.
The Lead Community Organizer will be responsible for conducting outreach to Access-A-Ride consumers through community outreach, social media, and partnerships with community-based organizations. The organizer will be responsible for developing a City-wide campaign to transform paratransit services for New Yorkers with disabilities, including campaign planning; lobbying; building coalitions of Access-A-Ride consumers and community-based organizations and taking a leadership role where necessary; communicating about the advocacy campaign to diverse audiences; convening trainings and meetings; creating outreach materials in collaboration with coalition partners; conducting surveys; encouraging enrollment in Access-A-Ride; assisting with factual development for litigation; providing technical assistance to community leaders and activists; drafting a report with recommendations for changes to Access-A-Ride policies, procedures and materials, and a plan for future advocacy efforts; and educating the public, elected officials and the media about Access-A-Ride issues. The organizer will also be tasked with engaging and coordinating efforts to broaden an Access-A-Ride reform coalition to include workers, organized labor, environmental groups, and other stakeholders.
- Demonstrated commitment and passion to disability justice.
- Strong writing, organizational, analytic, and public speaking skills.
- Ability to work both collaboratively and independently and to juggle multiple tasks under time constraints.
- Excellent strategic judgment and the drive to effectuate challenging campaigns.
- Flexibility, creativity, and initiative.
- Experience working with community-based organizations and individual clients.
- Experience building coalitions, leading collaborative efforts, and working on advocacy campaigns.
- Experience with legislative/policy advocacy and lobbying.
- Strong interpersonal and communications skills and ability to work and communicate with a diverse audience: staff, organizational partners, and community members.
- Experience working with traditional and social media.
- Proficiency in a second language strongly preferred.
- At least five years of relevant (disability, transportation, and/or organizing) experience strongly preferred.
NYLPI is offering a salary of $60,000 depending on experience and comprehensive employer-paid benefits, including health insurance, short and long term disability and life insurance, an outstanding retirement savings plan and fifteen (15) days of vacation during the first year of employment.
NYLPI is an Equal Employment Opportunity employer. We value the dynamism and perspective that staff diversity brings to the work and culture of the office. We actively recruit and seek to maintain a staff that is diverse along many axes, including but not limited to: disability; race, ethnicity, and national origin; socioeconomic background; and sexual orientation and gender identity. NYLPI recognizes the ongoing need to foster and support diversity at all levels of the organization. We especially encourage persons with disabilities to apply for the Lead Community Organizer position.