The United States government currently jails more than 44,000 individuals daily in a secretive system of jails and prisons, solely on the basis of their place of birth and immigration status. The Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) detention system is riddled with corruption and abuse. Local governments and private prison operators profit richly from the system, leading to perverse incentives for expansion and for cutting corners on health and safety precautions. The Trump administration has advanced a rhetorical framework characterizing all migrants as a public safety threat, a gambit designed to convince elected officials and the public that jails are the only appropriate placement for immigrants undergoing immigration court proceedings.
The DefundHate campaign, of which NIJC is a member, works toward the goal of, in the short term, cutting funds for immigration detention and enforcement and, in the long term, legislatively ending immigration detention. NIJC seeks a Detention Oversight Policy Fellow to develop and implement a project designed to cultivate a large group of elected officials to become champions for these shared goals.
Position Summary: The Detention Oversight Policy Fellow will develop and implement the project described above, This role will include domestic travel. High proficiency or fluency in Spanish is preferred.
Essential Duties and Responsibilities:
- Develop and maintain systems to support enhanced oversight of the full ICE detention system.
- Strengthen and expand NIJC’s existing toolkit for members of Congress visiting ICE detention facilities.
- Develop and launch a targeted campaign to identify, develop and support members of Congress willing to make specific commitments toward pursuit of DefundHate goals, with a focus on encouraging members to engage in unannounced visits to Immigration and Customs Enforcement jails.
- Engage in human rights visits and monitoring to ICE and CBP facilities; supplement visits with targeted public records request and research; and draft policy briefs outlining the human rights issues identified during the site visits.
- Adheres to professional standards as outlined by governmental bodies, (and/or other appropriate professional associations), private funding sources, Organization plans/policies and Unit guidelines. Participates in periodic evaluative reviews and/or in-house and external staff training to ensure that she/he understands and continues to adhere to such standards. Initiates requests for assistance or guidance from Supervisor to address new issues or complex concepts affecting adherence to professional standards.
- Other duties may be assigned.
Education and/or Experience:
At least three years experience in immigration policy / advocacy.
Experience in human rights law; self-motivated and committed to civil liberties advocacy; experience advocating with federally elected lawmakers preferred; demonstrated ability to work cooperatively on a variety of projects with lawyers, other staff members, and diverse community organizations and coalitions.
Competencies: To perform the job successfully, an individual should demonstrate the following competencies.
- Analytical - Synthesizes complex or diverse information; Collects and researches data; Uses intuition and experience to complement data; Designs work flows and procedures.
- Reasoning Ability : Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists. Ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.
- Design - Generates creative solutions; Translates concepts and information into images; Uses feedback to modify designs; Applies design principles; Demonstrates attention to detail.
- Problem Solving - Identifies and resolves problems in a timely manner; Gathers and analyzes information skillfully; Develops alternative solutions; Works well in group problem solving situations; Uses reason even when dealing with emotional topics.
Project Management - Develops project plans; Coordinates projects; Communicates changes and progress; Completes projects on time and budget; Manages project team activities.
Technical Skills - Assesses own strengths and weaknesses; Pursues training and development opportunities; Strives to continuously build knowledge and skills; Shares expertise with others.
Customer Service - Manages difficult or emotional customer situations; Responds promptly to customer needs; Solicits customer feedback to improve service; Responds to requests for service and assistance; Meets commitments.
Interpersonal Skills - Focuses on solving conflict, not blaming; Maintains confidentiality; Listens to others without interrupting; Keeps emotions under control; Remains open to others' ideas and tries new things.
Oral Communication - Speaks clearly and persuasively in positive or negative situations; Listens and gets clarification; Responds well to questions; Demonstrates group presentation skills; Participates in meetings.
Written Communication - Writes clearly and informatively; Edits work for spelling and grammar; Varies writing style to meet needs; Presents numerical data effectively; Able to read and interpret written information.
- Teamwork - Balances team and individual responsibilities; Exhibits objectivity and openness to others' views; Gives and welcomes feedback; Contributes to building a positive team spirit; Puts success of team above own interests; Able to build morale and group commitments to goals and objectives; Supports everyone's efforts to succeed.
- Visionary Leadership - Displays passion and optimism; Inspires respect and trust; Mobilizes others to fulfill the vision; Provides vision and inspiration to peers and subordinates
Change Management - Develops workable implementation plans; Communicates changes effectively; Builds commitment and overcomes resistance; Prepares and supports those affected by change; Monitors transition and evaluates results.
- Delegation- Delegates work assignments; Matches the responsibility to the person; Sets expectations and monitors delegated activities; Provides recognition for results.
- Leadership - Exhibits confidence in self and others; Inspires and motivates others to perform well; Effectively influences actions and opinions of others; Accepts feedback from others; Gives appropriate recognition to others.
- Quality Management - Looks for ways to improve and promote quality; Demonstrates accuracy and thoroughness.
Cost Consciousness - Works within approved budget; Conserves organizational resources.
- Diversity- Demonstrates knowledge of EEO policy; Shows respect and sensitivity for cultural differences; Educates others on the value of diversity; Promotes a harassment-free environment; Builds a diverse workforce.
- Ethics - Treats people with respect; Keeps commitments; Inspires the trust of others; Works with integrity and ethically; Upholds organizational values.
- Organizational Support - Follows policies and procedures; Completes administrative tasks correctly and on time; Supports organization's goals and values; Supports affirmative action and respects diversity.
Strategic Thinking - Develops strategies to achieve organizational goals; Understands organization's strengths & weaknesses; Analyzes market and competition; Identifies external threats and opportunities; Adapts strategy to changing conditions.
- Judgment- Displays willingness to make decisions; Exhibits sound and accurate judgment; Supports and explains reasoning for decisions; Includes appropriate people in decision-making process; Makes timely decisions.
- Motivation- Sets and achieves challenging goals; Demonstrates persistence and overcomes obstacles; Measures self against standard of excellence; Takes calculated risks to accomplish goals.
- Planning/Organizing - Prioritizes and plans work activities; Uses time efficiently; Plans for additional resources; Sets goals and objectives; Organizes or schedules other people and their tasks; Develops realistic action plans.
- Professionalism-Approaches others in a tactful manner; Reacts well under pressure; Treats others with respect and consideration regardless of their status or position; Accepts responsibility for own actions; Follows through on commitments.
- Quality - Demonstrates accuracy and thoroughness; Looks for ways to improve and promote quality; Applies feedback to improve performance; Monitors own work to ensure quality.
- Quantity- Meets productivity standards; Completes work in timely manner; Strives to increase productivity; Works quickly.
- Safety and Security - Observes safety and security procedures; Determines appropriate action beyond guidelines; Reports potentially unsafe conditions; Uses equipment and materials properly.
- Adaptability- Adapts to changes in the work environment; Manages competing demands; Changes approach or method to best fit the situation; Able to deal with frequent change, delays, or unexpected events.
- Attendance/Punctuality - Is consistently at work and on time; Ensures work responsibilities are covered when absent; Arrives at meetings and appointments on time.
- Dependability - Follows instructions, responds to management direction; Takes responsibility for own actions; Keeps commitments; Commits to long hours of work when necessary to reach goals; Completes tasks on time or notifies appropriate person with an alternate plan.
- Initiative - Volunteers readily; Undertakes self-development activities; Seeks increased responsibilities; Takes independent actions and calculated risks; Looks for and takes advantage of opportunities; Asks for and offers help when needed.
- Innovation- Displays original thinking and creativity; Meets challenges with resourcefulness; Generates suggestions for improving work; Develops innovative approaches and ideas; Presents ideas and information in a manner that gets others' attention.
Physical Demands: The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
- While performing the duties of this Job, the employee is regularly required to talk or hear.
The employee is frequently required to stand; walk; sit; use hands to finger, handle, or feel and reach with hands and arms.
The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 25 pounds.
Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception and ability to adjust focus.
Work Environment: The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
Heartland Alliance makes all hiring and employment decisions, and operates all programs, services, and functions without regard to race, receipt of an order of protection, creed, color, age, gender, gender identity, marital or parental status, religion, ancestry, national origin, amnesty, physical or mental disability, protected veterans status, genetic information, sexual orientation, immigrant status, political affiliation or belief, use of FMLA, VESSA, military, and family military rights, ex-offender status (depending on the offense and position to be filled), unfavorable military discharge, membership in an organization whose primary purpose is the protection of civil rights or improvement of living conditions and human relations, height, weight, or HIV infection, in accord with the organization's AIDS Policy Statement of September 1987