The ACLU of Massachusetts (“ACLUM”) seeks a Deputy Legislative Director to help advance the organization’s civil rights and civil liberties agenda in the Massachusetts state legislature, across a broad range of issue areas—including criminal law reform, racial justice, government accountability, freedom of expression, privacy and surveillance, immigrant rights, gender and LGBTQIA equality, reproductive rights and voting rights. The focus of this role is to analyze law and policy through a civil liberties lens, draft and review proposed legislation, write and deliver compelling testimony, and advocate for ACLUM law reform priorities directly with policy makers and through coalitions. This position reports to the Legislative Director, manages ACLUM legislative fellows, and collaborates with the organization’s entire advocacy team, including legal, communications, field, and programmatic departments.
The ideal candidate brings enthusiasm, and passion to their work, has excellent legislative drafting and analytical skills, is familiar with working in a fast-paced political environment, and is experienced in partnering with like-minded advocates in coalition to achieve legislative objectives.
Flexibility to accommodate work during evenings and weekends when warranted is an important requirement for this role.
Legislative Policy Development, Analysis, and Drafting
- Develop multi-issue subject matter expertise on policy and legislative issues to inform ACLUM’s strategic advocacy efforts, with an emphasis on criminal law reform and drug policy.
- Review and track legislation and state budget proposals for impacts on civil rights and civil liberties.
- Conduct legal and policy analysis to inform and support ACLUM’s broad legislative agenda.
- Write legislative testimony.
- Collaborate with the ACLUM communications team to create other advocacy materials to educate policymakers and the public on top ACLUM legislative priorities.
- Help develop new legislation and policy models to promote and defend civil liberties.
- Work with national ACLU experts to align state-level public policy goals with national priorities.
Lobbying and Strategic Advocacy
- Serve as one of ACLUM’s staff lobbyists at the State House, attend hearings, and engage with legislators and their staff.
- Assist in developing and implementing legislative strategies to achieve the organization’s advocacy priorities.
- Build, nurture, and track relationships with lawmakers in coordination with the Legislative Director, other ACLUM staff and consultants engaged in direct lobbying.
- Coordinate and deliver testimony at legislative hearings.
- Represent ACLUM in legislative and advocacy coalitions as assigned.
- Work closely with ACLUM field and membership strategists to advance ACLUM’s legislative agenda outside of the state house.
- Manage and supervise ACLUM legislative fellows, interns, and cooperating counsel in collaboration with the Legislative Director.
- Special projects and other tasks as assigned by the Legislative Director.
Qualifications, Experience and Attributes
- JD degree or a degree in government, law, public policy, or similar field of study required.
- Minimum of 5 years of public policy experience required; experience in a political or legislative environment strongly preferred.
- Rich experience conducting legal or policy analysis in areas related to civil liberties required; knowledge of criminal law and procedure strongly preferred.
- Excellent research, analysis, legislative writing, and verbal communication skills required.
- Demonstrated experience and success communicating complex legal concepts in a simplified, understandable manner for general audiences.
- High level of organization, attention to detail, and follow-through, and ability to balance and prioritize multiple activities and responsibilities.
- Excellent relationship-building skills, and proven ability to inspire collaboration and action by others as a member of a team and with allied organizations.
- Undaunted by a high-paced, deadline-driven environment.
- Proficient in the use of Microsoft Office applications, including Outlook, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
- Strong belief in the ACLU’s work and mission to defend and strengthen civil rights and civil liberties.
- Commitment to diversity and inclusion. Respect for differences in race, ethnicity, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, ability, and socio-economic background.
Key Performance Indicators
- Effective prioritization of work and timely completion of assigned tasks and projects.
- Clarity of written and oral communication.
- Diligence in identification of substantive and political implications of emerging matters.
- Proactive relationship building and attentiveness to interpersonal and political cues and dynamics.
- Effective collaboration with ACLUM and national ACLU colleagues, and coalition partners.
- Frequent written and verbal communication
- Frequent and extended periods of being in a stationary position
- Extensive reading, preparing, and analyzing information, in hard copy and electronic format
- Flexibility to accommodate work outside of regular business hours when warranted
Salary commensurate with experience. Benefits include 401(k), medical and dental insurance, and generous paid vacation and holidays.
About the ACLU of Massachusetts
The ACLU of Massachusetts (ACLUM) was founded in 1920 and is an affiliate of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), a nationwide, non-profit, non-partisan law and policy reform organization that works to defend and strengthen civil rights and civil liberties. Through strategies of litigation, lobbying, public education, and communications, we work to advance racial justice, voting rights, reproductive justice, immigrants’ rights, LGBTQ rights, women's rights, criminal law reform, freedom of speech, privacy rights, and religious liberty.
ACLUM is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and encourages women, people of color, persons with disabilities, members of the LGBTQIA community, and formerly incarcerated people to apply.
This position is based in Boston, MA and eligible for a hybrid work schedule, being in-person an average of three days per week, with the ability to be in the office on any given day as needed and assigned. ACLUM has a Covid-19 vaccine mandate, and candidates receiving a job offer will be required to show proof of being fully vaccinated against COVID-19 prior to commencing employment. Exemptions to this requirement will be considered on a case-by-case basis in accordance with applicable law. Applicants should be aware that fully remote work will not be deemed a reasonable accommodation.
TO APPLY: Applicants for this position should submit a resume, list of references, and a cover letter that best expresses their interest and unique qualifications, via email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Type the position title in the subject header. No phone calls or faxes please.