Role: Asylum Lawyer (two positions)
Start date: March 2021
Organisation: European Lawyers in Lesvos (www.elil.eu)
Location: Lesvos or Athens, Greece
Working hours: Full-time (9.30 – 17.00 Monday – Friday)
There are currently over 20,000 asylum seekers on the Greek Aegean islands, the vast majority of whom have fled Syria, Afghanistan or Iraq, and a further 100,000 on the Greek mainland. The asylum process they go through is a complex and ever-changing legal procedure that is difficult to navigate. Despite this, there is no state-provided legal aid available for asylum seekers before their asylum interviews and so the majority of them attend their interview without having spoken to a lawyer. The only way an asylum seeker can receive legal assistance in relation to their asylum interview is through one of the few NGOs operating.
Without access to legal assistance, asylum seekers often do not know their rights or understand the process and the criteria applied when their asylum applications are assessed. They are therefore significantly disadvantaged when they attend their asylum interview and often suffer problems and delays in the processing of their asylum applications. This absence of legal information and legal assistance puts human rights at risk and undermines the rule of law.
European Lawyers in Lesvos (“ELIL”) is a charity registered in Germany and Greece. It was founded by the Council of Bars and Law Societies of Europe (CCBE) and the German Bar Association (DAV) in 2016. These organisations represent the bars and law societies of 45 European member, associate and observer countries, and through them more than 1 million European lawyers. ELIL is now also supported by the Conseil national des barreaux (CNB).
ELIL was inspired by belief in the fundamental importance of upholding the rule of law, protecting human rights and ensuring meaningful access to legal assistance. Our team of Greek asylum lawyers and volunteer European asylum lawyers provide free, independent legal assistance to asylum seekers and, so far, we have provided free legal assistance to over 11,000 people on Lesvos and Samos.
Our main activity is the provision of one-on-one legal consultations to prepare asylum seekers for their asylum interview. We also help reunite families by assisting with family reunification applications under the Dublin Regulation and assist unaccompanied minors (interview preparation, family reunification and age assessment).
After almost five years of successful work on the Greek islands, ELIL is now beginning a new project to provide legal assistance to asylum seekers in Athens.
We are looking to recruit a two committed and experienced asylum lawyers to join our team, one based in Lesvos and one based in Athens.
The start date for these roles is March 2021. We offer a competitive salary, details of which are available on request.
The roles reports to the Legal Coordinator.
- Providing individual legal assistance, counselling, information and, where applicable, representation for asylum seekers, including for unaccompanied minors
- Researching and drafting submissions in support of asylum seekers’ applications for international protection, where applicable
- Assisting with family reunification applications under the Dublin Regulation
- Responsibility for an interesting and varied case load
- Developing and maintaining good relations with applicants for international protection, relevant stakeholders and other actors
- Representing ELIL in legal aid/protection coordination meetings, as required
Skills and experience required:
- Law degree and registration with a Greek Bar Association
- Detailed knowledge of Greek asylum law
- Familiarity with relevant Greek asylum procedures
- Excellent verbal and written English and Greek skills
- Excellent drafting, analytical and communication skills
- At least two years’ experience of practising asylum law, preferably with experience of working for an international organisation or INGO/NGO
- Experience of providing face-to-face legal assistance in a humanitarian/emergency context, preferably including to unaccompanied minors
- Undergraduate or graduate degree in a relevant field (e.g. international law, human rights, refugee law, international relations) desirable
- Knowledge of international refugee law and human rights law desirable
- Ability to adapt to a changing legal, humanitarian/emergency-response environment
- Ability to work in a fast-paced, multicultural environment and to cope with competing demands under tight deadlines
- Excellent interpersonal and teamwork skills and experience of establishing good working relationships with a variety of people of different nationalities
- Capable of being proactive and working independently
- Passionate about supporting the rights of refugees and migrants
- Culturally sensitive
- High professional ethics
How to apply
To apply for this role, please send a CV and cover letter in English by email to the Project Coordinator, Philip Worthington (email@example.com).**
Closing date for submission of applications: 2 March 2021.
Applications will be processed as they come and the position maybe filled before the above deadline. Only short listed candidates will be contacted. All applications will be treated with strict confidentiality.