Mekong Legal Coordinator

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Mekong Legal Coordinator

Location: Chiang Mai, Thailand

Position Title: Mekong Legal Coordinator

Location: Chiang Mai, Thailand

Reports To: Mekong Region Policy and Legal Advisor

Application Deadline: 20 August, 2020

Start Date: As soon as possible

EarthRights International (EarthRights) is a non-governmental, non-profit organization that combines the power of law and the power of people in defense of human rights and the environment, which we define as “earth rights.” A key part of who we are organizationally is our three-pronged approach to making change: training of community and legal activists, strategic legal work in defense of human rights and demanding corporate accountability, and campaigns to promote systemic governmental and corporate policy change. Our work focuses on climate justice and accountability, earth rights defenders, and corporate accountability. 

EarthRights is currently seeking a Mekong Legal Coordinator to join our Mekong Legal Program, based in Chiang Mai, Thailand.  

Summary Description

Reporting to the Mekong Regional Policy and Legal Advisor, the Legal Coordinator will support the work of the Mekong Program to develop and implement legal strategies to protect human rights and the environment. The Legal Coordinator will support and participate in the formulation of national, regional legal strategies, community legal training programs, and legal support for community leaders and civil society partners. The Legal Coordinator will conduct legal research, writing, develop legal memorandums, policy proposals and will support workshops in collaboration with EarthRights staff and partner organizations.

The position requires substantial experience in international human rights and environmental legal advocacy, policy and practice, ability to work with diverse staff and partners, and demonstrated success in developing and implementing effective legal advocacy in the Mekong Region. The position may require travel to other countries in the Mekong region (Myanmar, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam).   

Roles and Responsibilities

  • Support the development and implementation of program goals, strategies and work plans in line with EarthRights’ mission and strategic plan in consultation with the Mekong Policy and Legal Advisor.
  • Support and work with the Mekong Legal Team to develop and implement national legal strategies in Thailand and other Mekong region countries to protect human rights and the environment, especially on behalf of indigenous and ethnic minority Mekong communities.
  • Conduct research on cases in the Mekong region countries that fit into the objectives of the organization and which could potentially result in litigation.
  • Support in the development of strategies to collaborate with national and regional organizations with regard to protecting human rights and the environment in the Mekong region.
  • Support engagement with Thai human rights pathways, such as National Human Rights Commissions, and in the formulation of regional and international legal strategies, guided by EarthRights Strategic Plan 2020-2024.
  • Perform legal research, advocacy, policy proposals, and participate in workshops in collaboration with other NGOs, federations and indigenous communities.
  • Work with Mekong Legal Team and other Mekong staff to design and implement projects to increase the knowledge and capacity of affected communities in the Mekong region in the area of indigenous rights, human rights and accountability mechanisms (i.e., via trainings and workshops).
  • When necessary, work with the Mekong Legal team and partner organizations to provide legal support to community/indigenous leaders.
  • Assist the Mekong office with overseeing quality implementation of projects, including budgeting activities, reporting to donors, and monitoring and evaluation, in line with EarthRights’ financial and other policies. 
  • Provide report and proposal writing support to the EarthRights development team.
  • Help develop partnerships with other NGOs and activists in the Mekong region to advance EarthRights’ advocacy goals.
  • Support the full integration of gender and social inclusion into EarthRights’ program activities.  
  • When assigned, speak on behalf of EarthRights on legal issues to policy makers, businesses, media and other earth rights stakeholders at conferences, meetings and other public events.
  • Help coordinate and conduct training sessions for the annual Mekong Legal Advocacy Institute (MLAI) two-week training for junior legal professionals from the Mekong region. 
  • Help coordinate EarthRights’ ongoing communication with MLAI alumni.
  • Other tasks assigned by the Mekong Region Policy and Legal Advisor. 

Qualifications

EarthRights seeks candidates that meet the following criteria below:

  • University degree in Law. 
  • 2-3 years’ work experience in legal capacity.
  • License to practice law in Thailand preferred.
  • Prior experiences in administrative court representation.
  • Experience with community organizing and engagement.
  • Demonstrated commitment to human rights and environmental justice and legal professionalism.
  • Experience with regional and international bodies and processes relevant to the protection of human rights and the environment in Asia, such as the ADB, MRC, AICHR, and/or Mekong country domestic legal systems
  • Experience working with Mekong regional networks of NGOs, CBOs, academics and with diverse teams of lawyers, non-lawyers and grassroots activists.
  • Experience in the provision of training and workshops to communities.
  • Strong legal research and writing skills.
  • Experience in research for policy development in the Southeast Asia context.
  • Strong interpersonal skills and ability to work in a team and under strict deadlines.
  • Excellent analytical skills, good judgement, personal initiative, and effective task management.
  • Experience or interest in working with people from diverse cultures.
  • Native level Thai speaker and fluency in English.
  • Demonstrated experience and understanding of the complexities and security demands of implementing projects in sensitive political contexts.
  • Excellent cross-cultural communication skills, including experience working with colleagues from across Southeast Asia and Western countries.
  • Interest, enthusiasm, and affinity for using the law as a vehicle for social change.
  • Demonstrated sensitivity to gender and social inclusion issues.

How To Apply

PLEASE FOLLOW ALL INSTRUCTIONS CAREFULLY.

By August 20, 2020 candidates should send an email with the subject line “Mekong Legal Coordinator” to apply-sea@earthrights.org with the following documents:

  • Cover letter describing their interest in the position
  • CV or resume
  • 3-5 pages of sample or extract of legal writing or writing on a relevant topic or issue without editing.  

Please note that only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

EarthRights International is an equal opportunity employer that does not discriminate in its hiring practices, and actively encourages people of color, women, people with disabilities, and LGBTQI people to apply