Systems Advocate

Job Summary: Under general supervision, the Systems Advocate assists the Advocacy Department in creating enduring systems change at the local, state, and national levels. The Systems Advocate will also maintain awareness of issues and concerns that affect the lives of individuals with disabilities including the improvement of community living. 

Duties and Responsibilities:

Assist the Director of Advocacy and in achieving the agency’s mission: full integration, independence and civil rights of people with all types of disabilities.

Review and edit written communications, including but not limited to letters, action alerts, newsletter articles, and blog entries.

Attend monthly Public Policy and Advocacy Team meetings.

Assist with the planning and implementation of Rochester area advocacy efforts involving public hearings, community meetings, trips to Albany, local group advocacy projects, protests, and demonstrations.

Communicate with members of legislative bodies, agencies and other entities through letters, e-mails and calls.

Field and return calls; determine the advocacy issues(s) and whether to pursue and the appropriate measures of advocacy.

Recruit and organize volunteer advocates to work on issues of importance.

Record activities and prepare various reports for appropriate agencies.

Spearhead advocacy efforts to improve access to housing and ending domestic violence for disabled people, as well as other disability related issues that they arise.

Travel at local, state, and national levels. 

Required Knowledge and Skills: 

Professional verbal and written communication skills required.  The Systems Advocate must be comfortable working with individuals from diverse backgrounds. Basic knowledge of disability rights is preferred. Basic knowledge of Microsoft Office. Comfortable with popular social media platforms. Willingness to participate in direct actions. Passion for civil rights mandatory.  

Education And Work Experience: 

Minimum Associate’s degree, Bachelor’s preferred.

Minimum one year professional or volunteer experience in advocacy or civil rights work.

Education and experience may be substituted for life experience.

Excellent written communication skills

Familiarity with Rochester area policy makers and key businesses

Basic computer skills, especially word processing

Fluency in sign language and/or Spanish language is a plus

Community organizing skills are a plus. 

Essential Functions/Physical Requirements:

The Job Duties are representative of the essential functions of the position. The physical requirements for this position are those typically present in normal office environment conditions. Operational flexibility is required to meet sudden and unpredictable needs. Reliable transportation is necessary as there may be local day business travel required of this position. Ability to travel for days at a time required.

Center for Disability Rights is an EEO employer - M/F/Vets/Disabled
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