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Organization TypePublic Interest
Years of Experience
Fair Housing Counsel Responsibilities: Under the supervision of the Fair Housing Program Director, functions as flexible member of the Fair Housing Department in support of federal, state, and local fair housing law enforcement. Will coordinate all aspects of testing and monitoring program, respond appropriately to discrimination inquiries and complaints, and provide community education/ outreach in collaboration with other staff and departments. Recruit and train fair housing testers. Facilitate positive relationships between testers. Employ various methods to assist in determining where to conduct tests including scouting and research. Develop testing strategy and select appropriate testers. Make test assignments, provide appropriate and thorough instructions for each test, and review them with the testers. Provide clear and accurate directions when necessary, utilizing maps or other sources of information. Analyze test reports, debriefing notes, and other information to determine whether there is evidence of illegal housing discrimination and, if so, assessing its severity. Receive and respond to all fair housing inquiries and housing discrimination complaints coming to BNI. Obtain complete information about any alleged discrimination and in consultation with appropriate staff, determine whether any discriminatory housing practice appears to have occurred. Provide consultation to complainants with regard to their rights, options and remedies under the fair housing laws. Assist complainant in trying to negotiate a satisfactory resolution of their complaints. Write reasonable accommodation or modification requests when necessary. Refer appropriate cases to federal, state and local agencies for necessary enforcement actions and participate as required in gathering additional evidence and providing any other assistance needed in those cases, including any further action taken through own legal resources. Act as a resource to outside attorneys litigating cases. Maintain complete and accurate records of all activities related to various job duties and assignments and produce reports on such activities as may be required. Help to increase the awareness of the assistance available if housing discrimination is suspected. Assist with in-house training and orientation of staff, interns, volunteers, etc. Keep informed of developments in federal, state and local housing laws, regulations, guidelines, court cases and research. Interact effectively and represent BNI in professional and positive manner at all times to clients, representatives of housing, real estate, and related industries, staff, volunteers, testers, interns, members, board directors, etc. Maintain appropriate confidentiality. Handle sensitive issues with tact and professionalism. Monitor real estate advertising in newspapers magazines and other publications to ensure compliance with the prohibition against discriminatory advertising practices. As requested, may assist with program audits and reporting to funding sources. Communicate and interact effectively and appropriately with program and administrative staff. Utilize formal and informal supervisory time with Program Director to maintain appropriate level of information sharing and goal setting.
Qualification and Experience
Requirements: BA/BS degree with relevant experience and or JD Degree preferred. Preference is given to those with previous experience in fair housing, disability advocacy, or other civil rights work. Bi-lingual (English & Spanish) language skills are a plus. Computer literacy in word processing and internet research required. Must have a proven ability to work within a structured organizational setting, excellent written, verbal and interpersonal skills, and the ability to remain objective and interact effectively with persons in stressful and/or sensitive situations.
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