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LGBTQIA+ Hate Crime Advocacy Officer

Line Manager: Policy and Advocacy Manager
Salary: £23,166 PA
Location: Belfast (role will include some regional work)
Hours: 35 Hours Per Week
Contract: Fixed Term until 31st March 2025 (may be extended subject to funding)
Holidays: 25 Days p/a Plus Statutory Holidays

Background to the Post

Anti LGBTQIA+ Hate Crime is extremely under-reported in Northern Ireland so why not take this opportunity to join a great team and make a real difference in people’s lives. Reporting to the Policy and Advocacy Manager you will be part of a thriving team and will retain a specific focus on working to support victims of Anti LGBTQIA+ hate crime on a regional basis, supporting individuals through the reporting and prosecution process.

In 2021/2022, there were 541 homophobic and transphobic incidents recorded in Northern Ireland. However, research carried out by The Rainbow Project in 2021 has showed that 24% of lesbian, gay and bisexual people in Northern Ireland had been the victim of a homophobic hate crime in the last three years. Despite the high levels of homophobic hate crime, the same report showed that 51% of such incidents were never reported to the PSNI and the most common reason given was fears that the police would not or could not do anything.
The Rainbow Project, supported by the Department of Justice and the PSNI have developed the Hate Crime Advocacy Service.

The Hate Crime Advocacy Service (HCAS) offers a safe and confidential space to provide support to victims of hate and signal crimes across the different protected characteristics. We can support you whether or not you have reported the crime to the police. We accept referrals from all agencies and self-referrals. Interpreters across a wide range of languages are available upon request.

It is delivered through a consortium of advocacy organisations, including:
• Victim Support NI
• Leonard Cheshire
• The Rainbow Project
• Migrant Centre NI

Aim of Post
To encourage and support members of the community to report homophobic and transphobic hate and signal incidents/crimes as a victim or witnesses and support them in accessing relevant support agencies.

Key Responsibilities
The advocacy worker will:
• The LGBTQIA+ advocate will provide one-to-one support for victims of LGBTQIA+hate crime/incidents across Northern Ireland as agreed with PSNI.
• The LGBTQIA+ advocate/hosting agency will increase the number of reported homophobic hate crimes/incidents to PSNI.
• The LGBTQIA+ advocate/hosting agency will increase the number of reporting transphobic hate crimes/incidents to the PSNI.
• Attend bi-weekly and quarterly review meetings with HCASNI and PSNI.
• The LGBTQIA+ advocate will develop awareness within PSNI of LGBTQIA+ hate and signal crime and its impact.
• The LGBTQIA+ advocate will promote the Hate Crime Advocacy Service through related websites, leaflets and events/talks/seminars which occur at a strategic and regional level.
• The LGBTQIA+ advocate will promote the Hate Incident Practical Action Scheme (HIPA).
• The LGBTQIA+ advocate will survey the experiences and satisfaction of clients and will include the completion of Victim Satisfaction Surveys regarding police engagement and advocacy services.
• To inform future PSNI policies and practices to ensure they reflect the needs of the LGBTQIA+ communities.
• Identify any information and service “gaps” which need to be addressed by PSNI.

Essential Qualifications & Experience
– Three GCSEs at grade C or above to include English;
– One-year full-time experience as a paid member of staff as an Advice Worker or Advocacy Worker or three years similar experience as a volunteer;
– Experience working on own initiative with limited ongoing supervision.

Essential Competencies
– Good written and verbal communication skills;
– Good interpersonal skills;
– Commitment to equality and social inclusion;
– Commitment to confidentiality and impartiality within advocacy work.

Desirable Experience, Criteria and Competencies
– Understanding of issues affecting members of the LGBTQIA+ community including but not limited to homophobia, transphobia and heterosexism;
– Experience of working in the LGBTQIA+ Sector as a volunteer or paid member of staff;
– Experience of working on hate crime reporting and/or housing issues.
– Enhanced Access NI or CTC Clearance

The Rainbow Project requires all posts within the organisation to carry a degree of flexibility in their execution of duties to assist the development of the organisation.

All responsibilities associated with contracted personnel will be carried out in line with the aims and objectives of the organisation and policies set out by the Board of Trustees.

The above job description should not be viewed as an exhaustive list as other tasks may need to be undertaken as directed by the Line manager.

Employees will be expected to be flexible in their approach to working hours, as evening and weekend work will be necessary.

The closing date for the applications is Monday 07 November at 12 noon.

For further information & application forms please contact;

Aisling Playford
Policy and Advocacy Manager
The Rainbow Project,
Belfast LGBTQIA Centre,
23-31 Waring Street,
Telephone: (028) 9031 9030
Work Mobile – 07770 436481

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