12 September 2014

VACANCY: Training and Community Liaison Officer - Freedom of Information Programme

In line with SAHA's central mission, the Freedom of Information Programme (FOIP), launched in 2001, is dedicated to using the Promotion of Access to Information Act, 2000 (PAIA) to extend the boundaries of access to information in South Africa, by:

  • increasing compliance with, and the use of, PAIA, through practice-based research and advocacy;
  • empowering individuals and organisations to understand PAIA as a strategic advocacy tool; and
  • creating awareness of the right to access to information an enabling right, fundamental to the realisation of other human rights both within South Africa, and across the continent, in order to invigorate citizen demand for the right to know.

Summary of key responsibilities

  • Draft and submit requests for records on behalf of members of the public and as part of SAHA’s community training and capacity building training programme – in terms of the provisions of PAIA –and prepare all related correspondence, appeals against refusals of access to information, complaints to relevant authorities and contribute to litigation;
  • Coordinate the development, planning and delivery of community training and related resources, including a pilot programme working at the local government level;
  • Provide support and guidance to members of the public, notably communities and community based organisations, on issues relating to freedom of information;
  • Contribute to advocacy and community mobilization efforts relating to the implementation of PAIA and access to information, and related law and policy reform work, often in partnership with other human rights organisations;
  • Prepare documents released under PAIA for physical and digital archiving at SAHA, in conjunction with the SAHA archival team;
  • Keep abreast of developments in freedom of information within South Africa and globally;
  • Contribute to the maintenance of FOIP related web products, including the PAIA Tracker;
  • Contribute to FOIP and SAHA’s work plans and reports;
  • Support the work of the FOIP Coordinator, and the learning of FOIP interns & other project workers.

Required qualifications and skills

  • Degree in Law, Political Science, Public Administration or related field;
  • At least 1 years related experience working in a legal or civil society environment;
  • Familiarity with the human rights sector and a strong commitment to human rights;
  • Experience in community outreach and training;
  • Excellent written and spoken language skills, in English as well as at least two other South African languages. 

Preferred qualifications and skills

  • Understanding and experience working on access to information and related issues
  • Experience in developing, running and evaluating legal training programmes at the community level

The role will be based at the SAHA offices at Constitution Hill in Johannesburg and will report to the FOIP Coordinator. This is a contract post: 1 year fixed period post, renewable depending on funding and performance.

To apply

Please send a letter of motivation (1 - 2 pages) that specifically addresses the above selection criteria and your suitability for this role, along with a CV (3 – 4 pages), copies of academic transcripts, and up-to-date contact details of at least three professional referees to toerien@saha.org.za

Closing date: Monday 22 September by 4pm. 

Interview date: Monday 29 September 2014

Starting date: As soon as possible, but preferably no later than 3 November 2014 (negotiable)

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