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Vacancy name: Legal Officer
Hours: 40hrs a week
Reports to: Area Manager
Positions: Two (2)
Application Deadline: 3rd February 2023
ABOUT JUSTICE DEFENDERS
Picture this: an overcrowded and under-resourced prison full of men, women, or even children who have not been found guilty. This is the case for three million people around the world currently affected by the excessive use of pre-trial detention.
In many countries, suspects are detained in prison almost automatically once they are arrested. Whatever the offence. Some, yes, are guilty. Many are poor and unjustly targeted. At Justice Defenders, we want to see justice served; it’s vital for all of us. What we don’t want to see is people filling our prisons simply because there was no one to equip them to fight for justice.
Justice Defenders is a registered UK charity and US nonprofit. Founded in 2007, we work across Africa, training incarcerated people and prison officers to become paralegals. Our 35 prison-based legal offices in Uganda, Kenya, and The Gambia are run by more than 300 paralegals. By equipping justice defenders to facilitate a just legal process, we help ensure a fair hearing at the point of greatest need. As everyone deserves the right to tell their story.
The Justice Defenders Kenya office is looking for a Legal Officer, under the guidance and supervision of the Area Manager, who will assist in systematizing the legal aid support provided by the paralegals in handling cases within the legal offices in the prisons.
- Offer legal services to Justice Defenders clients in prisons.
- Support and supervise prison-based paralegals in offering legal services.
- Support in continuous training of paralegals.
- Manage the legal office and ensure that the operations are effective and efficient and that activities are well managed.
- Engage as assigned in appropriate committees, working groups, and other activities to maintain strong and productive external networks.
- Responsible for ensuring that standards and quality of legal services delivery are maintained and developed.
- Support the Area Manager in creating training materials and manuals in order to conduct necessary training and workshops required for the efficient and effective implementation of activities in the legal offices.
- Lead on the filing, follow-up, and recording of cases, to ensure timely outcomes.
- Support the research on relevant cases and other supporting authorities/material required within the legal office.
- Support in the carrying out of research to understand the current situation including; the prevailing challenges in accessing justice in the project sites; recommend changes and improvements, work with key influencers in the prison service and in the community to inform the design of relevant interventions to address identified gaps.
Qualifications and experience
- An honors Degree in Law from a recognized university.
- At least three years experience in criminal law practice.
- Experience in managing a team.
- Proven research skills.
- Proficiency in working with the Microsoft Office suite.
- Proven ability to take initiative in developing relationships, initiatives, and options for action that might benefit the charity’s drop-in clinics aims.
Key competencies and abilities
- Excellent communication skills oral and report writing.
- Excellent interpersonal & networking skills.
- Ability to work independently and as part of a team.
- Ability to work under pressure and to make informed and accurate decisions.
- Focused and goal-oriented.
- Flexibility, openness, and broad-mindedness.
- Possess professional maturity, sensitivity to different cultures, and impeccable integrity that exemplify JDs’ values of Bravery, Humility & Solidarity.
Like to apply?
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Applications should be received by the stipulated deadline. Please note that only short listed candidates will be contacted.
We especially encourage applications from those who have been in prison, were the recipient of free school meals, or are from the first generation of their family to attend university and from those who consider themselves to be part of minority groups.