Position No:     10035581

Position Title:   RSD Associate Position Grade:  G6
Position Location: Washington, D.C.  


2.1 ORGANIZATIONAL CONTEXT. Define the role of the position within the team, describing its leadership role, if any, it’s external/internal work relationships or contacts, the contextual environment in which it operates and the scope of supervision received, and where applicable, exercised by the incumbent.


The RSD Associate will be a member of the Caribbean Protection Unit (CPU) in UNHCR’s Washington regional office. The CPU monitors the protection of persons of concern to UNHCR in 23 countries and territories in the Caribbean. The vast majority of these countries and territories do not have functioning asylum systems. Thus, UNHCR conducts refugee status determination (RSD) under its mandate and/or provides Advisory Opinions on individual cases for asylum-seekers in a number of countries in the Caribbean. The RSD Associate will contribute to UNHCR’s refugee status determination work in the Caribbean through interviewing asylum-seekers and issuing first-instance decisions and appeal assessments, as well as working closely with the CPU’s many local partners to promote the protection of asylum-seekers and refugees in-country. The RSD Associate will play a very active role in UNHCR’s capacity-building efforts throughout the Caribbean, including through providing technical guidance to Governments on asylum law and conducting trainings.


2.2 FUNCTIONAL STATEMENT. Describe the accountabilities, responsibilities and authorities associated with the position.


Accountability (key results that will be achieved)


–        The protection of asylum-seekers, refugees and stateless persons is promoted through the application of international and national law, relevant UN/UNHCR protection standards.

–        Protection activities are guided by the CPU protection strategy and respect UNHCR’s policy on age, gender and diversity (AGD).

–        Protection incidents relating to persons of concern to UNHCR are immediately identified and addressed.


Responsibility (process and functions undertaken to achieve results)


–        Stay abreast of legal, political, security and other developments which impact on the protection environment, and in particular, on protection delivery through RSD.

–        Assist in the development of the RSD strategy of the operation and in the annual planning exercise.

–        Provide counselling to, and respond to queries from, asylum seekers and refugees, including in the context of the notification of negative RSD decisions.

–        Maintain accurate and up-to date records and data related to all work on individual cases.

–        Assist in preventing and identifying fraud in RSD through oversight, advice and guidance to UNHCR staff, partners and persons of concern.

–        Systematically apply an age, gender and diversity (AGD) perspective in the performance of assigned functions.

–        Conduct research on country of origin information (COI) and other issues related to RSD and maintain the Operation’s local repository of relevant information, guidelines and standards accessible to RSD staff in the operation.

–        Assist in monitoring RSD trends and in compiling and analysing RSD statistics related to RSD case processing.

–        Assist in developing and maintaining processes to ensure that persons of concern, Government authorities and partners have accurate information on the RSD procedures, including UNHCR standards, policies and practice.

–        Assist in initiatives to advocate with and support Government authorities and legal partners to establish and strengthen fair and efficient RSD procedures and RSD decision-making.

–        Draft correspondence and reports relating to the RSD activities of the Operation.


Authority (decisions made in executing responsibilities and to achieve results)


–        Make decisions in individual cases in accordance with established policy, country-of-origin information, and relevant legal standards.

–        Refer individual cases to other functional units in the Operation and/or external partners for appropriate follow-up, in accordance with established criteria.

–        Counsel individual asylum-seekers on the reasons for negative RSD decisions, in accordance with the RSD SOPs.


2.3 REQUIRED COMPETENCIES, which illustrate behaviours that are essential to achieving deliverables described above, and that are critical to successful performance. All jobs require the staff to abide to the Values and Core competencies of UNHCR.  Where applicable, select a maximum of six Managerial and  of three Cross-Functional Competencies. (Note that the Performance Appraisal and Management System (PAMS) allows for up to five Cross-Functional Competencies to be selected by the staff member and the supervisor.


Code Managerial Competencies
1.  M001 Empowering and Building Trust
2.  M002 Managing Performance
3.  M003 Judgement and Decision Making
4.  M004 Strategic Planning and Vision
5.  M005 Leadership
6.  M006 Managing Resources
Code Cross-Functional Competencies
1.  X001 Analytical Thinking
2.  X002 Innovation and Creativity
3.  X003 Technological Awareness
4.  X004 Negotiation and Conflict Resolution
5.  X005 Planning and Organizing
6.  X006 Policy Development and Research
7.  X007 Political Awareness
8.  X008 Stakeholder Management
9.  X009 Change Capability and Adaptability
2.4 ESSENTIAL MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS AND PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE REQUIREDDefine the educational background, the relevant job experience and the language(s) that are essential to perform the work of the position.


–        Completion of Secondary School and advanced training/certification in social work or a related field.

–        Minimum 6 years of relevant professional job experience (of which three years can be fulfilled by relevant undergraduate/graduate studies).

–        Research and analytical skills.

–        Excellent oral and written communication skills.

–        Fluency in English and working knowledge of Spanish.

2.5 DESIRABLE QUALIFICATIONS & COMPETENCIES.  Describe any experience or knowledge that would be an asset, such as: UNHCR Learning Programmes, other training, additional languages, Field/HQs experience, etc.


–        Working experience with procedures and principles related to RSD.

–        Knowledge of International Refugee Law and Human Rights Law and ability to apply the relevant legal principles.

–        Experience in counselling asylum seekers or refugees.

–        Experience in working with vulnerable or traumatized individuals.

–        Completion of UNHCR’s RSD Learning Programme, COI Learning Programme, or Protection Learning Programme.


DEADLINE: Friday, 8 February 2019 at 5:00 p.m. EST


To apply, send a copy of your completed Personnel History Form and supplement (if necessary), a cover letter, and resume to: usawaadm@unhcr.org and note in the subject line “RSD Associate (G6).” Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.