Communications Strategist
at Heartland Alliance

Date Posted: 11/22/2019

Job Description

NIJC Communications Strategist Description

NIJC is seeking a communications strategist, with demonstrated interest in defending the rights of immigrants and/or other communities of color, to develop narratives and implement strategies to educate the public, media, and policy makers about 1) the importance of defending the rights of immigrants who are targeted for incarceration and deportation following criminal convictions or other interactions with the U.S. justice system, and 2) the need to restore vital human rights and due process protections in the U.S. immigration system.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Collaborate with NIJC’s legal services, Defenders Initiative, and policy staff to develop a plan to uplift the stories of NIJC clients who have had encounters with the criminal justice system by:

    • supporting clients as spokespeople and/or

    • collaborating with clients to otherwise share their stories in ways that celebrate their contributions to communities and expose the injustices of the U.S. criminal and immigration systems

  • Collaborate with NIJC’s San Diego office and D.C.-based policy staff to develop a communications strategy to decriminalize migration.

  • Serve as NIJC’s communications liaison to national coalitions to contribute to media strategies and message development to advance access to justice, and to inform NIJC’s communications strategies

  • Track and analyze media coverage of the criminalization of migration, to inform the strategies discussed above

  • Recognize internal and external opportunities and seize on them to educate NIJC audiences, media, and policy makers about the need to decriminalize migration, and potential solutions

  • This position will require the ability to travel, and may include weekend and overnight travel.


  • 3-5 years’ experience in professional communications, preferably in support of nonprofit social-justice-oriented organizations or campaigns

  • Demonstrated ability to think broadly and strategically about how narratives and storytelling can shift public perception of the systems of incarceration and criminalization that impact immigrants in the United States

  • Experience developing and executing communications strategies, preferably around immigration and/or criminalization and enforcement, or other complex issues in a social justice context

  • Experience working with individuals who have been incarcerated or otherwise impacted by the U.S. immigration or criminal justice systems

  • Experience collaborating with partners in social-justice coalitions

  • Compelling storyteller, preferably with professional writing and/or editing experience

  • Detail-oriented and organized project manager

  • Bilingual fluency (particularly in English and Spanish) highly recommended

  • Technical skills:

    • Required: Comfort using content management systems, social networking tools, and other media and web technologies

    • Other skills that would be an asset to this position include:

      • Photography, video, and/or audio production experience

      • Experience using Microsoft Excel to analyze data

Job Snapshot

  • Employee Type: Full-Time
  • Location: Chicago, IL
  • Job Type: Other
  • Experience: Not Specified
  • Date Posted: 11/22/2019

About Us

It’s more than a job, it’s a purpose.

Heartland Alliance—the leading anti-poverty organization in the Midwest— believes that all of us deserve the opportunity to improve our lives. Each year, we help ensure this opportunity for nearly one million people around the world who are homeless, living in poverty, or seeking safety. Our multicultural staff are passionate about our mission and make Heartland Alliance a dynamic and exciting place to develop your career.

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