Associate RSD Officer
Open recruitment (advertised)
Advertisement end date:24/01/2024
Description of assignment title
Associate RSD Officer
Expected start date
Sustainable Development Goal
16. Peace, justice and strong institutions
International UN Volunteer Specialist
(with possibility of extension)
Number of assignments
Mission and objectives
The primary purpose of UNCR is to safeguard the rights and well-being of people who have been forced to flee. Together with partners and communities, UNHCR works to ensure that everybody has the right to seek asylum and find safe refuge in another country. UNHCR also strives to secure lasting solutions. For over half a century, UNHCR has helped millions of people to restart their lives. They include refugees, returnees, stateless people, the internally displaced and asylum-seekers. Our protection, shelter, health, and education has been crucial, healing broken pasts and building brighter futures.
Libya is not party to the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees or its Protocol. It has ratified the 1969 Convention Governing the Specific Aspects of Refugee Problems in Africa (OAU Convention) and is also party to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (“Banjul Charter”). While the right to asylum is provided for in Article 10 of Libya’s 2011 interim Constitutional Declaration, there is no asylum legislation or any established asylum procedures. As a result, all non-Libyans, regardless of their status or protection needs, including asylum-seekers and refugees, fall under national immigration laws. Libyan laws criminalize all irregular entry, stay, or exit, for example without the appropriate documentation or through unofficial border posts, without distinguishing between asylum-seekers/refugees, migrants, or victims of trafficking. Over 45,000 refugees and asylum-seekers are registered with UNHCR. Refugees and asylum seekers face discrimination and challenges in access to basic services, while at risk of arrest and arbitrary detention in inhumane conditions. The decreasing resources in an economy damaged by conflict and COVID-19, limited cash liquidity and sharp price increases pose additional challenges for refugees and asylum seekers. Protection challenges are a grave concern, primarily driven by exposure, vulnerability and inability to cope with conflict and violence, human rights violations and abuses, breakdown of rule of law, and impediments to access goods and services.
Within the delegated authority and under the supervision of the RSD Officer or his/her designated mandated representative(s), the UN Volunteer Associate RSD Officer ensures that:
• UNHCR’s RSD procedures are implemented in accordance with relevant UNHCR standards and policies, including policies related to age, gender, and diversity mainstreaming (AGDM).
• Persons of concern have fair and transparent access to the RSD procedures.
• Fraud in the RSD process is identified and appropriately addressed.
• Stay abreast of legal, political, security and other developments which impact on the protection environment, and in particular, on protection delivery through RSD.
• Conduct RSD interviews and draft RSD Assessments in accordance with applicable standards and guidelines.
• Conduct eligibility interview for humanitarian evacuation and submit the related recommendation.
• Maintain accurate and up-to date records and data related to all work on individual cases.
• Provide counselling to asylum seekers and refugees.
• Assist in designing, implementing and revising operation-specific SOPs for all aspects of the RSD operation in accordance with applicable standards and policies.
• Assist in preventing and identifying fraud in RSD through oversight, advice and guidance to UNHCR staff, partners and persons of concern.
• Assist in monitoring RSD trends and in compiling and analysing RSD statistics related to RSD case processing to identify and respond to developments or issues impacting on the efficiency or quality of RSD decision-making, and to propose remedial measures.
• Conduct research on country of origin information (COI) and legal issues related to RSD and assist in maintaining a local repository of relevant information, guidelines and standards accessible to RSD staff in the operation.
• Assist in developing and maintaining processes to ensure that persons of concern, UNHCR protection staff and partners have accurate information on the RSD procedures, including UNHCR standards, policy and practice.
• Conduct any other related tasks as may be required or assigned by the supervisor.
Furthermore, UN Volunteers are encouraged to integrate the UN Volunteers programme mandate within their assignment and promote voluntary action through engagement with communities in the course of their work. As such, UN Volunteers should dedicate a part of their working time to some of the following suggested activities:
• Strengthen their knowledge and understanding of the concept of volunteerism by reading relevant UNV and external publications and take active part in UNV activities (for instance in events that mark International Volunteer Day);
• Be acquainted with and build on traditional and/or local forms of volunteerism in the host country;
• Provide annual and end of assignment self- reports on UN Volunteer actions, results and opportunities.
• Contribute articles/write-ups on field experiences and submit them for UNV publications/websites, newsletters, press releases, etc.;
• Assist with the UNV Buddy Programme for newly-arrived UN Volunteers;
• Promote or advise local groups in the use of online volunteering, or encourage relevant local individuals and organizations to use the UNV Online Volunteering service whenever technically possible.
• As an active team member, efficient, timely, responsive, client-friendly and high-quality support rendered to UNHCR and its beneficiaries in the accomplishment of her/his functions, including four completed RSD first instance cases a week and 2 appeal cases.
• Age, Gender and Diversity (AGD) perspective is systematically applied, integrated and documented in all activities throughout the assignment.
• A final statement of achievements towards volunteerism for peace and development during the assignment, such as reporting on the number of volunteers mobilized, activities participated in and capacities developed.
27 – 80
Candidate must be a national of a country other than the country of assignment.
3 years of experience in the area of refugee protection, human rights or international humanitarian law
• Minimum 1 year of experience working directly with procedures and principles related to RSD.
• Knowledge of International Refugee Law and Human Rights Law and ability to apply the relevant legal principles.
• Strong research and analytical skills.
• Excellent oral and written communication skills.
Area(s) of expertise
English, Level: Fluent, Required
Arabic, Level: Working knowledge, Desirable
Required education level
Bachelor degree or equivalent in Law, political science, international relations or another related field.
• Degree (equivalent of a Master’s) plus 2 years experience or Doctorate degree (equivalent of a PhD) plus 1 year of previous relevant work experience may also be accepted.
Competencies and values
• Professionalism: demonstrated understanding of operations relevant to UNHCR; technical capabilities or knowledge relevant or transferrable to UNHCR procedures and rules; discretion, political sensitivity, diplomacy and tact to deal with clients; ability to apply good judgement; ability to liaise and coordinate with a range of different actors, especially in senior positions; where appropriate, high degree of autonomy, personal initiative and ability to take ownership; resourcefulness and willingness to accept wide responsibilities and ability to work independently under established procedures; ability to manage information objectively, accurately and confidentially; responsive and client-oriented;
• Integrity: demonstrate the values and ethical standards of the UN and UNHCR in daily activities and behaviours while acting without consideration of personal gains; resist undue political pressure in decision-making; stand by decisions that are in the organization’s interest even if they are unpopular; take prompt action in cases of unprofessional or unethical behaviour; does not abuse power or authority;
• Teamwork and respect for diversity: ability to operate effectively across organizational boundaries; excellent interpersonal skills; ability to establish and maintain effective partnerships and harmonious working relations in a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic, mixed-gender environment with sensitivity and respect for diversity; sensitivity and adaptability to culture, gender, religion, nationality and age; commitment to implementing the goal of gender equality by ensuring the equal participation and full involvement of women and men in all aspects of UN operations; ability to achieve common goals and provide guidance or training to colleagues;
• Commitment to continuous learning: initiative and willingness to learn new skills and stay abreast of new developments in area of expertise; ability to adapt to changes in work environment.
• Planning and organizing: effective organizational and problem-solving skills and ability to manage a large volume of work in an efficient and timely manner; ability to establish priorities and to plan, coordinate and monitor (own) work; ability to work under pressure, with conflicting deadlines, and to handle multiple concurrent projects/activities;
• Communication: proven interpersonal skills; good spoken and written communication skills, including ability to prepare clear and concise reports; ability to conduct presentations, articulate options and positions concisely; ability to make and defend recommendations; ability to communicate and empathize with staff (including national staff), military personnel, volunteers, counterparts and local interlocutors coming from very diverse backgrounds; capacity to transfer information and knowledge to a wide range of different target groups;
• Flexibility: adaptability and ability to live and work in potentially hazardous and remote conditions, involving physical hardship and little comfort; to operate independently in austere environments for protracted periods; willingness to travel within the area of operations and to transfer to other duty stations within the area of operations as necessary;
• Genuine commitment towards the principles of voluntary engagement, which includes solidarity, compassion, reciprocity and self-reliance; and commitment towards UNHCR’s mission and vision, as well as to the UN Core Values.
Living conditions and remarks
Location: Tunisia, North African counry bordered by Algeria to the west and southwest, Libya to the southeast, and the Mediterranean Sea to the north and east.
Safety and Security: The UN security level remains at 2 (low) in the northern part of the country including Tunis and 3 (moderate) in Southern Tunisia due to the growing instability in southern governorates of Medenine and Tataouine, along the Libyan borders. As a general rule, staff are encouraged to pay close attention to their personal security, to monitor the media for information about possible risks and to avoid demonstrations and public gatherings, as even peaceful protests can turn violent.
United Nations Volunteers is an equal opportunity programme that welcomes applications from qualified professionals. We are committed to achieving diversity in terms of gender, care protected characteristics. As part of their adherence to the values of UNV, all UN Volunteers commit themselves to combat any form of discrimination, and to promoting respect for human rights and individual dignity, without distinction of a person’s race, sex, gender identity, religion, nationality, ethnic origin, sexual orientation, disability, pregnancy, age, language, social origin or other status.
Note on Covid-19 vaccination requirements
This UNV assignment is subject to proof of vaccination against Covid-19 with WHO approved vaccine, unless the UNHCR Medical Service approves an exemption from this requirement on medical grounds