Community Organizer

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Job location
205 Orange Street
New Haven, CT 06510
United States
Organization information
Organization name: 
New Haven Legal Assistance Association, Inc.
Street address: 
205 Orange Street
New Haven
Job type: 
Legal - Civil
Position Description: 

New Haven Legal Assistance Association (NHLAA) is a legal aid organization, founded in 1964 in the midst of the Civil Rights movement, on the principle that access to the justice system requires access to legal representation. We strive to be in relationship with the community to lift up our clients’ voices and achieve racial, economic, and social justice. NHLAA serves clients living in 22 cities and towns in the Greater New Haven and Lower Naugatuck Valley communities. Our client base is primarily people of color impacted by the legacy of structural racialization, systemic racism, and implicit bias.

About the Position
NHLAA seeks a Community Organizer to join NHLAA’s Community and Economic Justice Unit. Our work is grounded in engaging in community development and economic justice on behalf of and in relationship with black and brown people living in New Haven. Our mission is to advance radical economic justice driven by historically disenfranchised black and brown communities in New Haven. Our Team combines legal representation with community organizing, in order to achieve the following goals: (1) Build power of impacted communities to confront displacement and gentrification; (2) Preserve and expand safe and inclusive low-income housing stock; (3) Remove barriers to economic stability and housing; and (4) Assert communal determination over use and development of public and private space. We work with local, community-based groups and residents to set up processes to establish representation of neighborhood interests, to articulate neighborhood goals, and to evaluate options to achieve their goals.


• Collaborate with the Connecticut Tenants Union to support organizational development and programming to provide organizing-based eviction prevention to tenant unions and individual tenants as members;

• Support and collaborate with existing and emerging tenant unions to develop eviction prevention strategies and provide legal information in connection with fair rent commissions, code violations, and landlord retaliation;

• Support efforts to increase the community’s collective power through building and supporting local and statewide coalitions;

• Education and outreach to community members about key municipal activities and processes, specifically involving housing and gentrification; and

• Support community members in advocating for affordable housing by staying informed and understanding how to be engaged in specific plans and policies.
• 1+ years outreach and community engagement experience.
• Bachelor’s Degree or four years of directly related experience.
• Dedication to economic, gender, social and racial justice.
• Ability to work independently and take initiative to lead projects while also working with a team
• Enthusiastic, self-motivated, and creative problem solver.
• Strong organizational skills, works well under pressure and takes deadlines seriously.
• Exceptional interpersonal and communication skills: proven ability to work with, cultivate relationships with, and establish networks among a diverse set of people including community residents, business owners, city officials, and partner organizations.
• Proven ability to work effectively and creatively with diverse people and groups.
• Willingness to work a flexible schedule including some evenings and weekends.
• Ability and willingness to travel occasionally throughout Connecticut.
• Computer proficiency in Google Drive, Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint and willingness to develop additional skills. Knowledge of GIS a plus.
• Experience leading workshops and trainings.
• Experience working with both conventional and social media.
• Access to a vehicle and insurance coverage.
• Experience in community organizing, including canvassing and phone banking.

To apply: 

Application Deadline
• We are accepting applications on a rolling basis and encourage candidates to apply as soon as possible.

• Salaries will be based on experience and in accordance with NHLAA’s salary scale. For example, an employee with 5 years of experience will have a starting salary of $43,000.We offer generous benefits, including a 403(b) retirement plan; health, dental, vision, and short term disability insurance; sick leave; vacation; and most observed state and federal holidays.

Application Instructions
• Please send a cover letter, resume, and list of at least three references to Carolyn Gontarski at [email protected]. NHLAA invites all applicants to include in their cover letter a statement about how your unique background and/or experiences might contribute to the diversity, cultural vitality, and perspective of our staff and legal services practice.

It is the policy of New Haven Legal Assistance to provide equal employment opportunity (EEO) to all persons regardless of age, color, national origin, citizenship status, physical or mental disability, race, religion, creed, gender, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression, genetic information, marital status, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local law.
Salary range: 
$39,000 to $75,000
Submission deadline: 
Sunday, December 31, 2023