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  • Organization: UNHCR - United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
  • Location: Tripoli
  • Grade: P-4, International Professional - Internationally recruited position - Mid level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Protection Officer (Refugee)
  • Closing Date: 2019-02-28

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Snr Prot Officer

Tripoli (Libya)

Before submitting an application, UNHCR staff members intending to apply to this Job Opening are requested to consult the Recruitment and Assignments Policy (RAP, UNHCR/HCP/2017/2 and the Recruitment and Assignments Administrative Instruction (RAAI), UNHCR/AI/2017/7 OF 15 August 2017.

Senior Protection Officer

The Senior Protection Officer (SPO) is Head of the Protection Unit in a Country or Sub-Office and reports to the Assistant or Deputy Representative for Protection, directly to the Representative or as appropriate, to the Head of Sub-Office. The incumbent has direct supervisory responsibility for protection staff who may include community services, registration, resettlement and education. He/she provides functional protection oversight to information management and programme staff and supervises protection standards, operational procedures and practices in protection delivery at the country level. The incumbent also acts as an advisor to senior management in designing a comprehensive protection strategy and represents the organization to authorities, UN sister agencies, partners and other stakeholders on protection policy and doctrine.

The Senior Protection Officer is normally a member of the Office senior management team and is relied upon by the Office to plan, lead and coordinate quality, timely and effective protection responses to the needs of populations of concern. This includes ensuring that operational responses in all sectors are shaped in a protection optic, mainstream protection methodologies and integrate protection safeguards. Another important element of the SPO's functions is to ensure that persons of concern are involved with the Office in making decisions that affect them, whether in accessing their rights or in identifying appropriate solutions to their problems. To achieve this, the incumbent will need to build and maintain effective interfaces with communities of concern, authorities, protection and assistance partners as well as a broader network of stakeholders who can contribute to enhancing protection.

- The protection needs of populations of concern are met through the application of International and National Law, relevant UN/UNHCR protection standards and IASC principles governing humanitarian coordination.
- The operation has a clear and coherent comprehensive protection strategy which incorporates a thorough age, gender and diversity (AGD) analysis and reflects the Organization's global, regional and country level priorities.
- The Participation of persons of concern is assured through continuous assessment and evaluation using participatory, rights and community based approaches.
- National protection capacities are improved through direct engagement, research and advocacy with all relevant external interlocutors.
- Instances of refoulement of refugees, forced return of IDPs, arbitrary deprivation of nationality resulting in statelessness and other protection incidents are immediately identified and addressed through direct intervention and advocacy.

- Stay abreast of political, social, economic and cultural developments that have an impact on the protection environment.
- Manage a consultative process with government counterparts, partners and persons of concern to develop and implement a comprehensive protection strategy addressing the specific protection needs of women and men, children, youth and older persons, persons with disabilities, minority groups such as sexual minorities and persons living with HIV/AIDS; and Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) priorities with regard to these persons.
- In operations applying the Cluster Approach, ensure the response of the Protection Cluster is grounded in a strategy which covers all assessed and prioritized protection needs of the affected populations.
- Ensure that the protection strategy is fully integrated into the Country Operations Plan, the UN Development and Assistance Framework (UNDAF) and the Humanitarian Country Team's common humanitarian action plan.
- Promote International and National Law and applicable UN/UNHCR and IASC policy, standards and codes of conduct and ensure that all sectors and /or in clusters in applicable operations fulfil their responsibilities mainstreaming protection.
- Design, deliver and monitor programmes on an AGD basis to address identified protection needs.
- Provide technical guidance and support to UNHCR and partners on all protection related issues.
- Oversee the management of individual protection cases including those on SGBV and child protection.
- Provide legal advice and guidance on protection issues to internal and external interlocutors; ensure legal assistance is accessible to persons of concern; liaise with competent authorities to ensure the issuance of personal and other relevant documents to persons of concern (women and civil documentation in particular birth certificates).
- Oversee eligibility and status determination in the country ensuring compliance with UNHCR procedural standards and international protection principles.
- Promote and implement measures to identify, prevent and reduce statelessness.
- Develop and implement a country-level education plan as part of the protection strategy and ensure partnerships are forged with the Ministry for Education, UNICEF and other partners.
- Develop and implement a country-level child protection plan as part of the protection strategy ensuring programmes use a child protection systems approach.
- Monitor, and intervene in cases of refoulement, expulsion and other protection incidents through working relations with governments and other partners.
- Implement and oversee Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for all protection/solutions activities.
- Ensure that durable solutions through voluntary repatriation, local integration and where appropriate, resettlement are sought and provided to the largest possible number of persons of concern.
- Coordinate the design, implementation and evaluation of protection related programming with implementing and operational partners.
- Develop and implement a programme of results-based advocacy through a consultative process with sectorial and/or cluster partners.
- Ensure that the Protection Sector or Cluster has an effective information management component which: provides disaggregated data on populations of concern and their problems; researches, collects and disseminates relevant protection information and good practices to enhance protection delivery.
- Build the protection capacity of national and local government, partners and civil society to assume their responsibilities vis-à-vis all persons of concern through protection training, mainstreaming and related activities.
- Coordinate capacity-building initiatives for communities and individuals to assert their rights.
- Advise and capacitate national authorities, relevant institutions and civil society to strengthen legislation and status determination procedures and mechanisms.

- Approve the protection strategy for endorsement by the Deputy / Representative and Regional Office or Headquarters.
- Chair protection coordination meetings, including Protection Cluster meetings in applicable operations and represent the protection sector/cluster in inter-agency mechanisms.
- Issue advocacy statements on behalf of UNHCR in protection sectoral meetings and/or on behalf of the Protection Cluster in applicable operations.
- Intervene with authorities on protection issues.
- Negotiate locally and as appropriate with resettlement countries and countries of return on behalf of UNHCR.
- Take review decisions on individual cases.
- Enforce compliance of staff and partners with global protection policies and standards of professional integrity in the delivery of protection services.
- Approve expenditures under the UNHCR protection budget and direct transparent and accountable financial and other resource allocation within the Protection Cluster in applicable operations. 

- Graduate degree (equivalent of a Master's) in Law, International Law, political Sciences or related field with good knowledge of International Refugee, Human Rights and Humanitarian Law plus minimum 8 years of previous work experience relevant to the function of which 3 years in the field and 5 years in an international capacity. Undergraduate degree (equivalent of a BA/BS) plus 9 years or Doctorate degree (equivalent of a PhD) plus 7 years of previous relevant work experience may also be accepted.
- Knowledge of English and UN working language of the duty station if not English.

- Diverse field experience desirable.
- Good IT skills including database management skills.
- Completion of the Protection Learning Programme, RSD-Resettlement Learning Programme and Management Learning Programme desirable.
- Knowledge of additional UN languages.

This is a Standard Job Description for all UNHCR Senior Protection Officer positions. The Operational Context may contain additional essential and/or desirable qualifications relating to the specific operation and/or position. Any such requirements are incorporated by reference in this Job Description and will be considered for the screening, shortlisting and selection of candidates. C001L3 - Accountability Level 3
C002L3 - Teamwork & Collaboration Level 3
C003L3 - Communication Level 3
C004L3 - Commitment to Continuous Learning Level 3
C005L3 - Client & Result Orientation Level 3
C006L3 - Organizational Awareness Level 3
M001L3 - Empowering and Building Trust Level 3
M002L3 - Managing Performance Level 3
M006L3 - Managing Resources Level 3
M005L3 - Leadership Level 3
M003L3 - Judgement and Decision Making Level 3
M004L3 - Strategic Planning and Vision Level 3
X005L3 - Planning and Organizing Level 3
X004L3 - Negotiation and Conflict Resolution Level 3
X007L3 - Political Awareness Level 3 <p>The UNHCR workforce consists of many diverse nationalities, cultures, languages and opinions. UNHCR seeks to sustain and strengthen this diversity to ensure equal opportunities as well as an inclusive working environment for its entire workforce. Applications are encouraged from all qualified candidates without distinction on grounds of race, colour, sex, national origin, age, religion, disability, sexual orientation and gender identity.</p>
See below for this postion's Operational Context

For those people applying for High Risk Duty Stations, we strongly encourage them – before deciding to apply- to read the country specific security and welfare country profiles which can be found on the Intranet under Support Services - Duty of Care ( Ensuring staff are better informed is part of the increased attention UNHCR is paying to Duty of Care.


Staff after having applied to High Risk Duty Stations will have access to country specific information webinars with Field Safety Section (FSS) and Staff Welfare Section (SWS) colleagues and provided with a tool to test their psychological preparedness for serving in High Risk Duty Stations. Applicants who applied for a position in a High Risk country will receive, after the deadline for applications has expired, a joint invitation from the Staff Welfare Section (SWS) and the Field Safety Section (FSS) to participate in these webinars. During the Webinars, latest updates on security and well-being will be provided, and FSS and SWS will address questions raised by participants. Applicants are highly encouraged to benefit, when applicable, from all measures as they provide most up-to-date security and well-being information helpful to assess staff’s readiness to serve in a High Risk Duty Station. A Staff Welfare Officer will also be available, if and when required, to discuss with interested applicants the results of the psychological preparedness tool as well as readiness for assignment in High Risk Duty Stations.


UNHCR Libya has been functioning throughout with the aid of national colleagues despite the challenges of the security situation in Libya. In early 2018, the evacuation status for the Libya operation was lifted and there is renewed impetus for international staff to return back to Libya and for the operation to be run fully from Tripoli. With elections looming in the last quarter of 2018, the political situation remains very complicated as the political landscape remains uncertain and divided.  Under the direct supervision of the UNHCR Senior Programme Officer, the incumbent will need to demonstrate the capacity, skill set and competencies necessary to work in a challenging position in a highly complex operational context. The operation is currently drawing a lot of international attention due to the pressing global issues of mixed migration and it is developing a lot of innovative responses in finding alternatives to detention for many persons of concern including the emergency transit mechanisms and scaling up the resettlement programme that will require a lot of programming support. A good understanding of the regional dynamics is also very useful and experience and exposure in working in similar contexts will be particularly helpful. A solid understanding of protection principles will also be key to understanding the programming needs of this particular operational context, given the complexities of the operation. Experience in both refugee and IDP operations, in coordination structures and in emergency missions will also stand the incumbent in good stead.
In the context of the country where most of the population are Arabic speakers it is very valuable that the incumbent will be able not only to communicate but to comprehend documents, contracts and official government communications and understand the content of such correspondences. Under the direct supervision of UNHCR Assistant Chief of Mission (Protection), the incumbent will ensure the delivery of protection by supervising registration, refugee status determination, durable solutions and co-lead the Refugee and Migrant coordination platform. The incumbent will ensure that all activities falling under the refugee program come in line with UNHCR¿s applicable standards and support in building up a solid protection capacity to ensure best delivery of results. S/he will supervise large team of national staff, each supervised by a Head of Unit at the P-3 level. The incumbent is therefore, relied upon to mobilize efforts and design strategies that would strengthen UNHCR¿s response to ensure that refugees and asylum seekers benefit from various office protection services and are able, despite security challenges in Libya, to reach out to UNHCR. The incumbent must ensure that implementation of UNHCR protection activities and solutions take into account strong consideration of anti-fraud measures.
The incumbent will also work with various internal and external actors, including INGOs, UN agencies and national authorities towards building a strong network for better cross referral and advocacy to enhance refugee protection. S/he will also design and ensure the implementation of UNHCR¿s capacity building plan. The incumbent will also act, alternatively with the other snr protection officer, as the head of the protection section in the absence of the Assistant Chief of Mission (Protection).Under a very challenging and difficult operational context in Libya, the senior protection officer should have relevant work experience in the various processing activities and in coordination. The present situation in Libya is unstable and the outlook uncertain. This creates ongoing pressures at work and in daily life as priorities are frequently upended for other urgent ad hoc tasks. The incumbent should be prepared to work under very challenging conditions and be able to manage stressful situations. In Tripoli, international staff are accommodated in designated compound sharing an apartment with one or two colleagues. The incumbent is also expected to demonstrate flexibility with regard to the lengthy and unpredictable visa process for Libya which may require to stay and remote management from Tunis. The position is based at the Country Office Tripoli. In view of the volatile security situation, international staff are accommodated at a designated compound from which free movement in/around Tripoli is restricted.
Movement and travel of international staff in Libya is permitted only with armored vehicles. Recalling the functions specified in the JD/description of responsibilities, the incumbent is also required to have solid background and experience in UNHCR Global practices and procedural standards for Registration, RSD and durable solutions as s/he is expected to provide guidance and advice on complicated cases for the team, including in exclusions, screening modalities, eligibility criteria, guidance on volrep procedures, development of counselling lines and master the update of existing SOPs and tools to adapt to the evolving nature of this operation. The incumbent would be required to be directly involved in management of complicated RSD cases and provide, guidance for future reference to the team. Solid knowledge and previous experience in case management is essential. The incumbent is also required to have a good knowledge and background in capacity building as s/he is supposed to lead on building up the capacity of national team, partners and government authorities. Experience in coordinating working groups would be a strong asset as the incumbent is expected to co-lead the Refugee and Migrant coordination platform where advocacy, policies and solutions will be addressed.
Strong management skills is essential, ability to work under pressure is highly desirable as well as strong experience in partner¿s management is essential.

Knowledge of Arabic language would be an asset as the operational context where main government partners use Arabic as main language of communication.

Please note that the closing date for vacancies in the Addendum 4 is Thursday 28 February 2019 (midnight Geneva time)

We do our best to provide you the most accurate info, but closing dates may be wrong on our site. Please check on the recruiting organization's page for the exact info. Candidates are responsible for complying with deadlines and are encouraged to submit applications well ahead.
Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.

What does it mean?

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