Jan 19, 2024

Democracy and Justice Policy Analyst

  • New Jersey Institute for Social Justice
  • Hybrid (Newark, NJ, USA)
Full-Time Advocacy/Lobbying Civic Engagement Policy

Job Description

The Democracy and Justice Policy Analyst position combines rigorous research and policy analysis and carrying out community-driven advocacy campaigns to help strengthen and advance democracy, especially for individuals and communities impacted by incarceration, in New Jersey. The position seeks a formerly incarcerated person who is working on issues of civic engagement and mass incarceration.

The Democracy and Justice Policy Analyst will specifically work to advance issues of voting rights restoration and a broader civic engagement for the formerly incarcerated. This person will help with policy and advocacy strategies and public education campaigns, in addition to leading coalitions of impacted persons, helping convene community meetings, and participating in conferences. Through this work, the Policy Analyst will cultivate relationships with leading community leaders, lawyers, government officials, academics, impacted persons and communities, and organizing/advocacy experts.

Using a holistic approach to address the unique and critical issues facing New Jersey’s urban communities, the Institute advocates for systemic reform that is at once transformative, achievable in the state, and replicable in communities across the nation. 


Responsibilities include:

  • Develop and conduct original research, reviews of existing research, and draft policy analysis, reports, letters, testimony, and advocacy materials pertaining to issues of democracy and justice and other issues, as appropriate, particularly as they affect communities of color and individuals and communities impacted by incarceration in New Jersey.
  • Research and draft op-eds, online articles, opinion pieces, reports, testimony, and advocacy materials pertaining to legislation, proposed administrative rules and regulations, and government policies and practices affecting the Institute’s civic engagement work.
  • Monitor local, state, and federal legislation and new developments and research in democracy and justice, especially those affecting communities of color and formerly and presently incarcerated individuals, and advise the team on these developments.
  • Organize, supervise, and lead coalitions of impacted persons that advance the civic engagement and voting rights work of the Institute, such as by promoting voter registration drives and building a base of supporters for legislative advancement.
  • Work with local, state, and national partner organizations and individuals to advance the Institute’s mission, engage on shared priorities, and exchange knowledge and information in support of the Institute’s programs and initiatives.
  • Attend coalition meetings and conferences and participate in in-depth briefings pertaining to Institute priority issues.
  • Develop and maintain relationships with impacted persons inside and outside of the prison system, including those who are currently incarcerated, those who are formerly incarcerated, and those who are out on parole or probation.
  • Engage in public speaking, including with the media and at conferences for expert and lay audiences.
  • Work in collaboration with Institute attorneys and staff, coalition members, and community partners on issue-based campaigns.
  • Help organize policy roundtables and convenings exploring civic engagement issues. 
  • Work with Institute legal and programs team to develop and incubate policy and advocacy initiatives as prototypes.
  • Assist with the integration of litigation, legislative initiatives, policy goals, public education, and targeted campaigns among the programs team.

Hiring Organization

New Jersey Institute for Social Justice


  • Bachelor’s degree preferred.
  • Formerly incarcerated.
  • Ability to work effectively with diverse coalitions and community groups, and to work across political ideology, race, ethnicity, socio-economic circumstances, gender, sexual orientation, and religion.
  • Passion for, and knowledge of, racial and social justice, and a familiarity with the work and mission of the Institute.
  • Outstanding research, writing, and oral communication skills; superior attention to detail; ability to work on multiple projects simultaneously; good problem-solving skills and a positive, professional attitude with excellent judgment, flexibility, determination, and grace in a fast-paced office.
  • Integrity, honesty, and a balanced, non-partisan approach.
  • Ability to work effectively in a collaborative context and participate in teams, including a willingness to circulate widely, communicate openly, listen well, and learn from others.
  • Excellent judgment and follow through.
  • Ability to think creatively and develop new and innovative litigation, policy, and advocacy strategies.

Industry/Service Area

Advocacy/Social Action, Public Policy, Social Justice


Mid-Senior level


This is a full-time, at-will position. Salary is commensurate with experience and includes excellent benefits, including health, dental, and vision plans; a 401(k) plan with an employer contribution; Medical Expense Reimbursement Program; life insurance; and generous vacation, sick, and holiday leave.

Application Instructions

Applications will be reviewed on an ongoing basis and will be accepted until the position is filled. Please email your cover letter, college transcripts, resume, two professional writing samples on which you are the primary author, and three professional references to recruitment@njisj.orgPlease submit your application materials via Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF.  Include all attachments in a single email stating, in the subject line, “Democracy & Justice Policy Analyst.”

Apply Now