- Work with FCNL
Legislative Director for Civil Liberties and Human Rights
The Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL) seeks an experienced lobbyist to lead our Congressional advocacy to repeal the 2001 blanket authorization for war, require respect for human rights and the rule of law, and reduce armed U.S. interventions around the world. The Legislative Director for Civil Liberties and Human Rights will join our team of lobbyists who develop and lead strategies to advance our legislative priorities in Congress and with the administration.
We’re looking for someone who shares our Quaker community’s fierce commitment to a world free of war and the threat of war, is passionate about human rights and the rule of law and is a relentless defender of our civil liberties. The legislative director must also have a clear-eyed understanding of what is possible with Congress and the administration, a demonstrated ability to focus and achieve legislative success and an ability to work collegially with a large, faith-based advocacy community around the country.
FCNL lobbies from a basis of spiritual and ethical purpose and seeks to change government policy and practice for the better, playing a key role in lobbying initiatives on Capitol Hill that focus on racial and economic justice, peace, stewardship of the environment, and election integrity.
FCNL’s lobbyists have extensive connections with Congressional offices and current conduct focused legislative campaigns on the following priorities: peacebuilding, human rights, nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation, curtailing endless war, criminal justice sentencing reform, immigration reform, refugees, solutions to climate change, economic justice and Native American issues. FCNL and Friends approaches each of these priorities by identifying, exposing and working to eliminate institutional racism, sexism, and militarism in order to promote genuine equality of opportunity and communities in which everyone can safely live, learn, work, worship and love.
Its dedicated grassroots network brings constituent perspectives into congressional offices—both in Washington at two major lobbying events each year, and in local district offices. FCNL informs and educates its network through newsletters and collateral materials and activates its grassroots network through a robust website, email, and social media outreach.
FCNL’s national network includes people from many different faiths and backgrounds who are activists and donors. The organization is dedicated to growing the network with a particular emphasis on building effective relationships as a path to policy change. In the past three years, FCNL increased the number of in-person visits from its constituents to legislators by 50%. Headquartered on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, FCNL is governed by a General Committee of 190 Quakers from across the country and employs a staff of 48, including 20 registered lobbyists.
FCNL has brought Quaker values to bear on national policy throughout its 75-year history through congressional testimony, Capitol Hill visits, grassroots lobbying, and educational initiatives. Its strategic direction in the coming years is to create a bigger presence for FCNL—through media and marketing, as well as through its growing and vibrant network of activists.
The Legislative Director for Human Rights and Civil Liberties is the lead FCNL lobbyist charged with identifying specific, achievable steps that Congress can take to repeal the post-September 11, 2001 laws that provide a blank check for war, indefinite detention, expanded surveillance and violations of national and international human rights.
The director will spend the bulk of his or her time on Capitol Hill, working with members of Congress and their staffs on strategies to repeal the 2001 and 2002 authorizations for the use of military force, reducing the use of drones, military training and other armed interventions around the world, closing the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba and promoting U.S. respect for domestic and international human rights and humanitarian law. The director will also develop a programmatic focus on religious liberty around our previous work on Islamophobia. The director must also have a passion for helping to mobilize our constituents around the country to advocate in their districts on these issues.
The Legislative Director for Civil Liberties and Human Rights is a vital member of our legislative team, reporting to the Legislative Director for Foreign Policy. He or she will also work closely with our Strategic Advocacy group to develop focused campaigns in the Congressional districts and states of representatives and senators who are decision makers on civil liberties and human rights priorities.
Key Priorities and Responsibilities
Represent FCNL to Congress and the Executive Branch: She or he develops and expands FCNL’s contacts with key legislative and executive branch officials to advance FCNL's lobbying priorities on Human Rights and Civil Liberties.
Develop a focused change strategy: In consultation with other designated staff, the Legislative Director for Civil Liberties and Human Rights will be responsible for developing and implementing change strategies. This staff person must also articulate this change strategy in a manner that is transparent and accessible to our staff, governors and fundraisers; and arrange for periodic assessments and evaluations.
Coordinate with other FCNL lobbyists: The legislative director will meet regular with other FCNL staff lobbyists to coordinate on lobby visits, intersecting programs (particularly military policy) and communications with the Hill and the administration.
Work with our colleague organizations: FCNL is a leading voice in several important coalitions working on civil liberties and human rights. We expect the legislative director will continue to engage specific coalitions that are relevant to FCNL’s change strategies.
Develop expertise: This legislative director will become our staff expert on civil liberties and human rights. Working with the Legislative Directors for Foreign and Domestic Policy, he or she will develop expertise on these issues and on other issues assigned by the Legislative Director for Foreign Policy. This includes monitoring legislative and policy developments; preparing and distributing fact sheets, background papers, editorials, newsletter articles, and other educational materials for general distribution; overseeing maintenance of web pages on assigned legislative issues.
Correspond with Congress: She or he will draft letters to Congress, legislative action messages to grassroots,
Represent FCNL disarmament position in the media through op-ed columns, letters to the editor, and reports, in coordination with the other designated staff to have the same published, distributed, or posted in a timely way and as appropriate.
Help to advance Friends policy and practice: She or he will work with other FCNL staff and committee members and other Quaker organizations to address the challenges to the Friends Peace Testimony presented by deadly atrocities, genocide, failed states, and the assertion of doctrines for preventive war.
Cooperate with Development Team. She or he will work with the FCNL grant writer to seek grants or other institutional support for FCNL’s legislative program activities on disarmament and military spending and other assigned issues. Fulfill terms of grant contracts in good order. She or he will also assist the FCNL Development Team to incorporate civil liberties and human rights into direct mail appeals, program interpretation materials for fundraising.
Other duties as assigned.
Experience and Attributes
- Highly-motivated leader.
- Five or more years’ experience of legislative advocacy--with Congress, a relevant administrative agency, a non-profit organization or business.
- Willingness to work on a bi-partisan approach to solutions.
- Strong Congressional contacts particularly focused on armed services, foreign relations and appropriations committees.
- Demonstrated ability to design and lead effective change-strategies focused on national legislation.
- Excellent research, writing, editing and demonstrated public speaking and media skills.
- Able to keep on top of numerous tasks and deadlines; able to create plans and adjust frequently as circumstances change.
- Consultative, collegial, problem solving and problem preventing.
- Legal background or work with international law or human rights.
- Self-reliant and able to take initiative.
- Familiarity with Quaker values and practices.
- Experience managing an intern or program assistant.
- Commitment to involving and including participants from a variety of backgrounds; ability to be flexible and negotiate programming accordingly.
Compensation and Work Expectations
Salary: depending on experience.
Work Week: This is a full-time exempt position, based on a 37.5 hour work week, with some travel. Because of the focus on Congress, we expect this individual to work out of our Washington, DC office. Some compensatory time will balance evening and weekend work and travel.
Benefits: Health insurance; disability insurance; life insurance; paid holidays; vacation; sick leave; maternity/paternity leave; retirement plan.
Send cover letter and resume to firstname.lastname@example.org (only electronic submissions will be accepted).
FCNL seeks to create a diverse workplace. We are actively soliciting applicants from different ethnic, racial and religious backgrounds.