Program Coordinator, Immigration Detention Bond Fund
- Job posted by Freedom for Immigrants (formerly CIVIC)
Start Date: As Soon As Possible
Application Deadline: Applications will be accepted until filled
Reports to: Executive Director
Location: Santa Monica, CA (our office is a couple of blocks from the 17th Street Expo Line and multiple bus stops) or Oakland, CA (our office is a couple of blocks from the 12th Street BART station).
About the Organization
On any given day, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) holds more than 40,000 people in a network of jails and prisons as part of the civil immigration detention system.
Detained immigrants, including people arrested in ICE raids and mothers separated from their children at the border, sometimes have the opportunity to be released on a cash bond — which is like bail — while fighting their cases.
In fact, 30 percent of people in detention in FY 2016 were granted a bond according to TRAC. Once released, they are eight times more likely to win their case. They also have a fighting chance to reunite with their children, some of whom are being detained at child detention facilities run by the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR).
However, many families cannot afford the high bond amounts set by ICE or by immigration judges. There is no upper limit for immigration bonds, but Freedom for Immigrants has documented immigration bonds ranging from $1,500 to $250,000, with a median of $4,250, and an average of $14,500.
Without the ability to pay a bond, longtime lawful permanent residents, asylum seekers and undocumented immigrants who may be eligible for relief from deportation are forced to languish in immigration detention while they fight their immigration case. This pushes families into poverty and creates tremendous emotional strain for both parents and children. Immigrants have lost housing, jobs, small businesses and custody of children as a result of not being able to pay a bond.
Today, the urgency to address this broken system in California and nationwide is unparalleled. Freedom for Immigrants’ highly dedicated team works to end U.S. immigration detention by monitoring human rights abuses, elevating stories, building community-based alternatives to detention, and advocating for system change. The heart of our work is community-based volunteers who visit people in detention, building relationships that have the power to change lives and systems. Currently, Freedom for Immigrants supports a network of over 1500 volunteers visiting at 43 immigration detention facilities through Freedom for Immigrants-affiliated visitation programs. And we have been running a bond fund since 2010 to prove that neither immigration bonds nor the entire immigration detention system is necessary. Freedom for Immigrants is an award-winning non-profit whose founders have been recognized for their vision and leadership by Ashoka, Echoing Green, James Irvine Foundation, and the Rockwood Leadership Institute. Learn more at www.freedomforimmigrants.org.
About the Position
This is an exciting, full-time opportunity to coordinate Freedom for Immigrants’ National Revolving Immigration Bond Fund. The is a new position. It is a year-long position with the possibility for extension, depending on funding. We are looking for someone who is creative and able to help shape this new role and the growth of our bond fund, while posting bonds on a daily or weekly basis and providing direct support to people being released from immigration detention. This position will be based out of our Santa Monica or Oakland offices, but the coordinator will be posting immigration bonds more than once a week in downtown Los Angeles or San Francisco.
Essential Duties & Responsibilities:
- Post immigration bonds for those who cannot afford to pay for their freedom
- Train visitor volunteers and law students on how to advocate for lower bonds for people in ICE custody under the case, Hernandez
- Coordinate with our visitor volunteers, attorneys, and family members a plan for the safe release of each person we bond out
- Recruit and manage accompaniment volunteers to assist people released from immigration detention with getting their first meal out of detention, getting a clean set of clothes, and getting transportation to their home back to their loved ones
- Manage a proprietary case management system
- Some fundraising for the actual bond payments may be necessary
You are driven, highly organized, and have a deep commitment to Freedom for Immigrant’s mission to abolish the U.S. immigration detention system. Applicants must be willing to work independently as well as in collaborative teams in a family-style office in Santa Monica or Oakland. A sense of humor and innovative spirit are essential.
To excel in this role, you will likely bring the following:
- Demonstrated interest and experience in racial and social justice, immigrant rights or detention abolition work.
- History of being self-motivated and hard-working.
- Excellent time management and organizational, multi-tasking skills.
- Excellent oral and written communication and strategic thinking skills.
- Ability to work independently. Past experience working in a decentralized start-up nonprofit is a plus.
- A sense of humor, flexible nature, and willingness to be a bit of a jack of all trades at times.
- Access to a reliable vehicle is desired.
- Fluency in Spanish is required.
- Candidates who have been directly affected by immigration detention or the mass incarceration system are highly encouraged to apply.
- Experience raising money is a plus.
Please note, we also are hiring for a community accompaniment coordinator (https://www.freedomforimmigrants.org/job-openings). Please do not apply for both positions. Choose the one that fits your skill set and experience the best.
Level of Language Proficiency
Excellent English writing and editing skills. Fluency in Spanish is required.
Freedom for Immigrants offers a competitive salary and generous benefits package.
Level of Language Proficiency
Spanish and English is required. Multi-lingual is a plus.
Minimum Education Required