NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ—Unity Square, a project of Catholic Charities that focuses on a 37-block neighborhood in the heart of New Brunswick, is searching for a new community organizer and “housing and tenant rights coordinator” for New Brunswick.
The charity is a partnership between Catholic Charities-Diocese of Metuchen and Sacred Heart Parish located at 56 Throop Avenue. Last year, organizer Jason Rowe proved instrumental in helping secure the passage of a local law against wage theft, the first in New Jersey.
Unity Square already has grant funding to pay for both positions through July 2015, and this funding might be renewed.
The community organizer would work with Unity Square staff to determine the ongoing issues that exist in the neighborhood, define them, and to develop strategies for dealing with those problems.
The organizer would also reach out to work with other community leaders, providing them with training and opportunities to apply their skills. He or she would also conduct research, attend meetings, track the organization’s finances, and help to expand Unity Square’s efforts.
The housing rights coordinator would be more targeted to tenants’ rights and housing issues, assisting tenants in their disputes with landlords, and helping to resolve such disputes.
He or she would research rent, housing issues, and area landlords. The coordinator would communicate with the New Brunswick Rent Control Board and city housing inspectors.
Unity Square is seeking people who can speak both English and Spanish, and are experienced in social activism or community organizing, and skilled with computers and direct communication with people. In the case of the housing coordinator, Unity Square also wants someone who is familiar with tenants’ rights and affordable housing laws.
Candidates are asked to submit their resume, salary history, and a cover letter to [email protected].
Unity Square focuses on a section of New Brunswick that is located between Commercial Avenue and Livingston Avenues, and between George and Sanford Street.
This neighborhood is estimated to have some 10,000 people in it; about one out of every four live below poverty level. Many residents are undocumented immigrants, who face additional challenges due to their status.
Richard researched transportation, land use, history, and other topics. Investigated site plans. Attended public meetings (planning board, zoning board, parking authority board of directors, City Council) to record and help determine what was discussed. Analyzed blueprints and site plans to determine what land uses sites would be put to. Photographed sites that would be affected by proposed projects, as well as sites involved in news events. Employed Sketchup CAD to visualize new land uses, such as buildings and structures. Critiqued and wrote articles in fast-paced work environment, writing before deadlines. Made judgments as to what constituted proper material to include in articles. Created a zoning map; am working on ways to show it to the public. Consulted vintage maps to determine historic land uses.