Poverty Law Advocate - Titanium HR & Recruitment Services

Sep 06, 2024
Fort St. John, British Columbia
The Fort St. John Women’s Resource Society is a strong and impactful social service provider in our community, promoting equality through outreach, safety and support.  We are looking for a dedicated Poverty Law Advocate to join our team. As a Poverty Law Advocate, you will advocate for clients, work collaboratively in a team of dedicated professionals, and engage with community partners and other stakeholders to achieve positive outcomes and systemic changes. The ideal candidate is a strong communicator, who approaches complex issues with patience, resourcefulness and resilience.

Program Summary

This program provides legal information, support, referrals and advocacy services for residents of Fort St John and area who have difficulty accessing timely and appropriate assistance due to barriers such as poverty, disability, language and literacy problems. The advocate will work directly with clients to educate them about their legal rights, explain options for legal problem solving and, where appropriate, assist them with dispute resolution, written submissions, and/or represent them at hearings before boards and tribunals. The Poverty Law Advocate reports to the Executive Director. This is a full-time contract position renewable annually.

Key Duties and Responsibilities
  • Provide legal information on poverty law issues to people in need
  • Consult with supervising lawyer on a regular basis for advice on case management
  • Interview clients by phone or in person and identify their legal issue(s)
  • Facilitate their access to other community resources as appropriate
  • Assess legal merits of case and identify and research law relevant to client issues
  • Offer clients knowledgeable and prompt legal information and procedural guidance to assist them with prioritizing options
  • Provide self-help materials as appropriate
  • Negotiate on clients’ behalf with other parties such as landlords and government agencies
  • Write letters and legal submissions on clients’ behalf
  • Assist clients with filling in forms
  • Attend hearings and meetings to present clients’ cases
  • Prepare monthly reports for the Board of Directors and Executive Director. Interact with and support board members
  • Prepare and facilitate public legal education workshops
  • Attend legal education workshops and seminars for professional development
  • Liaise with and assess needs of community groups
  • Attend meetings with other community agencies
  • Maintain and manage accurate and timely documentation for each client file and for the program caseload as a whole
  • Write regular reports as required by the BC Law Foundation, the program’s funder
  • Maintain regular communications with Executive Director and Supervising Lawyer
  • Annual travel out of town for the annual Law Foundation training conference, as well as for initial training at the beginning of employment
  • Engage in team support and annual operational strategic planning
Qualifications, experience and skills
  • Post-secondary education in social sciences, law, counseling, criminology or other relevant qualification; or a combination or relevant experience and legal education. B.A. degree is preferred, but other combinations of education and experience may be considered. 4th year students who will have their practicum between September and December are encouraged to apply.
  • Knowledge of and experience with the justice system
  • Interest and background in variety of areas of law, particularly as they apply to people living in poverty  
  • Ability to prioritize and independently manage workloads, schedules and tight deadlines
  • Aptitude for working effectively with disadvantaged clients including: those with mental, cognitive and physical disabilities; those with low income; those whose first language is not English or who have literacy problems; victims of abuse; seniors; people who use substances
  • Strong verbal and written communications skills including ability to identify hidden issues; ability to accurately identify clients’ concerns and guide them through options and resolution process with focus and attention to detail
  • Awareness of and sensitivity towards cultural influences within the community
  • Communicate with honesty and clarity, trained and comfortable in having difficult conversations
  • Alternative dispute resolution training an asset
  • Knowledge of local community resources (or how to find them)
  • Interest in public legal education
  • Ability to work independently, take initiative and at the same time function effectively as part of a team
  • Willingness to accept supervision
  • Strong record keeping and administrative skills including ability to keep reliable and accurate notes of client and other case contacts
  • Ability to manage confidential information in accordance with Law Society standards
  • Computer literacy – including Word, Outlook and Excel
  • Must be able to obtain and maintain a Criminal Records and Vulnerable Sector Check
  • Must be able to obtain and maintain a valid BC driver’s license and have own transportation.
  • Must be comfortable with maintaining healthy boundaries with clients, self, and others
  • Willingness to actively engage in self-care, critically reflect on strengths and weaknesses, set professional goals, and access support when needed.
  • Ability to remain calm under pressure,
  • Ability to relate to clients in an empowering, empathetic, and non-judgmental way; meeting them where they are at, and valuing their strengths 
  • Ability to maintain a high level of confidentiality and professionalism
Hours: 40 hours per week

Salary: $27 to $33 per hour depending on experience and qualifications.

The Fort St John Women’s Resource Society offers a competitive total compensation package:
  • Employer paid benefits
  • Three weeks’ paid vacation
  • 12 paid sick days
  • RRSP matching
  • Quarterly wellness days
Additionally, the employer is a supporter of work-life balance, employee mental health and wellness.
This job is from CharityVillage
How to Apply