Legislative Associate (Harrisburg)

The American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania (ACLU-PA) seeks a legislative associate to help advance the ACLU-PA’s policy priorities through legislative, coalition, and program advocacy while engaging ACLU-PA members and supporters in the campaigns and policy work of the organization.

The ACLU-PA is a nonprofit, nonpartisan public interest organization, dedicated to defending and enhancing personal freedoms protected by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights through litigation, legislative advocacy, and community education. The ACLU-PA has ten volunteer chapters, approximately 100,000 members and supporters, 31 full-time employees, and a $4.7 million operating budget.

Working under the direction of the legislative director, the legislative associate will be responsible for coordinating the ACLU-PA’s role and and participation in several local and statewide coalitions and will support the work of the ACLU-PA’s campaigns. The legislative associate will also assist with the development of and oversee a community lobbying training program and will assist in managing the core responsibilities of the ACLU-PA’s legislative work. This position works in close collaboration with other staff, including legal, communications, and field, on integrated advocacy initiatives in order to enhance the overall political capacity and effectiveness of the organization, as well as supporting existing networks of activists and volunteers.

This is a two-year, full-time, salaried position with a possibility of renewal depending on the organization’s needs and available funding. It is based in Harrisburg.

Legislative advocacy

In collaboration with the legislative director, the legislative associate will assist with the ACLU-PA’s lobbying efforts at the capitol with a particular emphasis on aligning and leveraging the affiliate’s network of members and supporters with the goals of the legislative program.  The legislative associate will:

  • Assist  with the development and management of a legislative action network to facilitate communication between the ACLU-PA and interested constituencies on legislative actions and updates and train them.

  • Assist the legislative director with:

    • Coordinating with advocacy staff to engage ACLU-PA constituencies in legislative lobbying efforts.

    • Managing legislative actions, briefings, constituent meetings, and lobby days.

    • Representing the ACLU-PA in stakeholder meetings, community events, panels, rallies, news conferences, and know-your-rights trainings.

    • Attending and reporting on legislative committee meetings and hearings.

    • Supporting the communications team by contributing to blog posts, podcasts, and responding to press requests and inquiries.

    • Tracking bills of interest in the Pennsylvania legislature and updating the website and database as needed.

Coalition advocacy

The legislative associate will be responsible for coordinating the ACLU-PA’s relationships with and participation in local and statewide coalitions and develop relationships with allies and other organizations to further advocacy goals. The legislative associate will:

  • Represent the ACLU-PA on a variety of coalitions and serve as the legislative liaison to select coalitions, providing updates and advice on bills of interest to those coalitions.

  • Work in partnership with allied organizations and coalitions to further the ACLU-PA’s legislative, issue, and policy priorities, including attending coalition meetings and identifying new potential partners.

Campaign and program advocacy

In collaboration with the legislative director, the legislative associate will support the work of the ACLU-PA’s targeted programs and campaigns, including the Campaign for Smart Justice, the Trans Education and Advocacy Program, and reproductive rights.

QUALIFICATIONS

  • 2-3 years of experience and demonstrated familiarity with legislative, policy, and/or issue advocacy.

  • Strong commitment to advancing the ACLU’s values, mission, and goals, with an understanding of the range of civil liberties and civil rights issues and their implications.

  • Demonstrated advocacy and organizational skills and the ability to prioritize and meet deadlines while under pressure.

  • Demonstrated ability to work respectfully, effectively, and collaboratively with diverse staff and a variety of stakeholders, including coalition and community groups, members, policymakers, volunteers, and organizational partners across the political spectrum.

  • Experience coordinating or organizing legislative, policy, political campaigns, public education, or issue-based advocacy campaigns.

  • Experience engaging and motivating volunteers and stakeholders and working cooperatively with coalition partners or allied organizations.

  • Strong communication skills, both written and oral, as well as the ability to articulate complex issues and communicate them clearly, respectfully, and effectively to a variety of audiences. Public speaking experience is preferred.

  • Ability to keep organized in a fast-paced environment, to manage several projects simultaneously, and adjust to frequently changing demands.

  • Familiarity with Pennsylvania’s legislative process, geography, demographics, and general political landscape preferred.

  • Commitment to diversity; a personal approach that values the individual, respects differences, and promotes inclusion of all identities.

  • Personal enthusiasm, collegiality, creativity, and a sense of humor.

  • Ability to work flexible and/or occasional overtime or irregular hours, particularly during legislative session.

  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office suite; familiarity with Google docs, sheets, and G-Suite is preferred.

COMPENSATION AND BENEFITS

Salary is commensurate with experience and within the parameters of the ACLU-PA compensation scale.  Excellent benefits include generous vacation and sick leave; individual/family employer-provided health insurance; life insurance and long-term disability; defined contribution plan with employer match; and 10 paid holidays. This position is full-time, salaried, and non-exempt under the Fair Labor Standards Act.

APPLICATION PROCEDURE

To apply, send a letter of application (cover letter), resume, and a short writing sample to advosearch@aclupa.org.  Please include your last name and “Legislative Associate” in the subject line of the email.  

DEADLINE

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled, at which time the job announcement will be removed from our website, www.aclupa.org/jobs.  

The ACLU-PA is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. We value a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture. The ACLU-PA encourages women, people of color, persons with disabilities, people with records of arrest or conviction, veterans, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals to apply.

The ACLU-PA comprises two separate corporate entities, the American Civil Liberties Union (the “Union”) of Pennsylvania and the ACLU Foundation (the “Foundation”) of Pennsylvania.  The Union is a 501(c)(4) nonprofit corporation, and ACLU membership dues fund its lobbying work. Donations to the Union are not tax-deductible. The ACLU Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation. Foundation funds support litigation and public education efforts. Donations to the Foundation are tax-deductible. The LegislativeAssociate is an employee of the ACLU of Pennsylvania.

Both the ACLU of Pennsylvania and the ACLU Foundation of Pennsylvania have the same overall mission, and share office space, employees, and the same board of directors. The two entities are jointly known by the term “ACLU of Pennsylvania.”

ACLU-PA’s hiring process will comply with Philadelphia’s Fair Criminal Records Screening Standards (“Ban the Box”) ordinance.

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