IACHR

Fellowship on International Protection and Internal Displacement 2015

Fellowship on International Protection and Internal Displacement 2015

This fellowship is offered thanks to the support of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), in order to support the Strategic Plan of the IACHR, in particular the strengthening of the Rapporteurship on the Rights of Migrants, within the framework of the Cooperation Agreement signed between the IACHR and UNHCR in 2001.

1) Venue of Fellowship: Executive Secretariat of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) of the Organization of American States (OAS). Address: 1889 F Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20006, United States of America.

2) Modality: On-site

3) Deadline to present applications: November 19, 2014

4) Start and End Dates: January 15th, 2015 to July 14th, 2015

5) Length of the Fellowship: 6 months

6) Objective: To provide an opportunity for young lawyers from OAS Member States to understand and apply the mechanisms of protection of the inter-American system of human rights in the area of the rights of asylum seekers, refugees, stateless persons, other persons in need of international protection and internal displaced persons.

7) Program: The fellow will assist with tasks of the Rapporteurship on the Rights of Migrants of the Inter-American Commission, under the supervision of its human rights specialists during the period of the fellowship and, at the end of the fellowship, present to the Executive Secretariat of the IACHR a detailed report on the activities carried out.

8) Expected results:

  • Collaboration with the team of the Rapporteurship on the Rights of Migrants of the IACHR in the elaboration of thematic and country reports.
  • Collaboration with the Executive Secretariat of the IACHR in the processing of petitions, cases and requests for precautionary measures relating to the rights of asylum seekers, refugees, stateless persons, other persons in need of international protection and internal displaced persons.
  • Preparation of draft reports on petitions and cases concerning the rights of asylum seekers, refugees, stateless persons, other persons in need of international protection and internal displaced persons.
  • Research on the situation of the rights of asylum seekers, refugees, stateless persons, other persons in need of international protection and internal displaced persons in specific countries and preparing specific reports based on the information collected.
  • Preparation of memos and other documents for hearings, working meetings and visits of the Commission related to the situation of the rights of asylum seekers, refugees, stateless persons, other persons in need of international protection and internal displaced persons.
  • Collaboration in initiatives related to the promotion and dissemination of the human rights system and the Rapporteurship on the Rights of Migrants.
  • Updating of the website of the Commission in relation to the work of the Rapporteurship on the Rights of Migrants and the Commission in the area of the rights of asylum seekers, refugees, stateless persons, other persons in need of international protection and internal displaced persons.

9) Requirements:

  • Be a citizen of an OAS Member State;
  • Be bilingual in Spanish and English (attach certificates testifying intermediate-advance level), knowledge of Portuguese or French desirable;
  • Have graduated in law from an officially recognized university (attach copy of the law degree and grades obtained);
  • Have received law degree preferably within the past 7 years;
  • Be admitted to practice as an attorney in a jurisdiction of an OAS Member State (in the absence thereof provide the reason);
  • Have a demonstrable professional or academic experience in the legal field of human rights, specifically in the areas of the rights of asylum seekers, refugees, stateless persons, other persons in need of international protection and internal displaced persons; and
  • Present an essay of up to five pages, not edited by another person, on a human rights issue of interest to the candidate on the challenges in protecting the human rights of asylum seekers, refugees, stateless persons, other persons in need of international protection and/or internally displaced persons and their access to justice and guarantees of due process in one or several countries of the Americas. The essay can be presented in English or Spanish using any format-not cover letter and/or bibliography are required.

10) Required documents: The following documents are required in order to be considered for the fellowship:

  • Letter of interest (cover letter from the interested person)
  • Two letters of recommendation (academic or professional)
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Certification of second language from any institution
  • Copy of law degree and grades obtained
  • Proof you are admitted to practice as an attorney in a jurisdiction of an OAS Member State (in the absence thereof, include an explanatory note)
  • Written essay of up to five pages

Note. All the required documents can be submitted either in English or Spanish. Only simple copies of the original documents required. There is no need to notarize or legalize them. The letters should be directed to the INTER-AMERICAN COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS.

Subject to the discretion of the Commission, the shortlisted candidates might be requested to respond to additional questions.

11) Benefits:

  • The IACHR provides a monthly stipend of US$3,200.00 during the period of the fellowship. With the stipend provided, the fellow is responsible for obtaining health insurance coverage of his/her choosing for the duration of the fellowship, and shall provide proof of coverage to the Executive Secretariat of the IACHR prior to initiating the fellowship.
  • Round-trip economy class air transportation from the participant’s country of residence to Washington, D.C. Terminal and transfer expenses are not covered.
  • The IACHR will award a certificate of participation in the Fellowship Program to the fellows who satisfactorily complete the entire period of the fellowship.

12) Responsibilities of the selected candidates:

  • Once an applicant has been selected, he/she should formally accept the fellowship in writing, confirming with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights his/her availability to complete the fellowship during the specified time period. Once accepted, the IACHR will proceed with the necessary arrangements for purchase of round-trip economy air transportation between the candidate’s country of origin/residence and Washington, D.C.
  • In the event a candidate accepts a fellowship but cannot complete it, for whatever reason, he/she must immediately inform the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights so that the course of action may be decided.
  • It is the responsibility of each selected candidate to request and obtain the necessary visa to enter the United States, and/or transit visa (if applicable) in a timely manner. The IACHR will not incur in any expense related to the processing of immigration or visa documents. The IACHR will provide the candidate a document certifying his/her selection as an official fellow of the IACHR so that he/she may request the corresponding visa, which is the sole responsibility of the selected candidate. In addition, the OAS will send a diplomatic note to the Embassy or Consulate where the selected candidate will be requesting his/her visa, certifying the fellow’s selection.
  • It is the responsibility of the selected candidate to arrive in a timely manner so that he/she will be present for the commencement of the fellowship on the date established by the IACHR.
  • If the selected candidate declines the fellowship after the flight ticket has been purchased, or does not travel on the established dates or changes routes, the candidate shall reimburse the IACHR the cost of the flight ticket or any additional costs incurred. The latter includes any additional costs, if any, incurred by the IACHR, such as extra costs for accommodation during the candidate’s travel to and from Washington, D.C.
  • If the candidate resigns, cancels or terminates the fellowship after the program has begun without providing sufficient reason and evidence to the IACHR for doing so, he/she will fully reimburse the IACHR for all costs incurred on his/her behalf.

13) Presentation of candidates:

  • The electronic application can be accessed through the link below. Prior to accessing the electronic application, applicants should have all the documents indicated in sections 8 and 9 above ready for upload.
  • Documents can be uploaded in the following formats: .pdf, .doc, .docx and .zip. The files to be uploaded should first be saved in the following manner prior to uploading, and should not include any special characters in the name: First name, last name, name of required document. (Example: JohnSmithResume.doc)

To complete the electronic application form, click here.

The fellowship application must be completed via the automated digital system created by the IACHR for this purpose. The system is open from November 4 to 19, 2014, inclusive. We will only accept applications received via the automated digital system using the above link.

If the system asks for a “Survey ID”, please enter the code FASMIG2015.

Please allow one month for the selection process. The results from the selection will be informed via e-mail to each applicant approximately one month after the application deadline above. Any questions can be directed to: CIDH_BECA@oas.org