The Free Speech Union is Hiring – Communications Officer

JOB TITLE: Communications Officer

CONTRACT: Up to 0.4 FTE initially to full time

SALARY: Up to £30,000 pro rated

DEPARTMENT: Communications

REPORTS TO: General Secretary

PURPOSE: We are looking for a person with a broad set of communication skills who can oversee our written output. Responsibilities will include writing, commissioning and editing research papers, as well as FAQs and briefing documents. The research papers and FAQs will be published on our website, but the briefing papers will be circulated to key decision-makers. In addition, you will be responsible for writing FSU responses to government consultations and writing weekly and monthly newsletters for our members and supporters, as well as writing articles promoting our research papers. This is a great opportunity to join a small and young organisation and make the role your own.

LOCATION: Home-based with ability to travel.

KEY RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Write, commission, edit and, if necessary, rewrite research papers on free speech issues for publication on our website;
  • Write articles for newspapers, magazines and periodicals to promote our research papers;
  • Help the General Secretary write articles and come up with quotes for newspapers, etc. and brief the General Secretary before media appearances when requested;
  • Write FAQs on free speech issues of interest to our members, e.g. how to find out if a ‘non-crime hate incident’ has been recorded against your name and, if it has, how to get it expunged;
  • Write briefing papers on legal and policy areas with a free speech dimension for circulation to key decision-makers, e.g. the Online Safety Bill;
  • Write the FSU’s responses to government consultations on proposed changes to the law that will affect free speech, e.g. banning conversion therapy;
  • Keep abreast of all the free speech news and suggest social media posts to the Director of Digital Content and Marketing;
  • Write the weekly email newsletter, which is a round-up of that week’s free speech news, for distribution to members;
  • Write the monthly email newsletter, which is a round-up of the FSU’s activity in the past month, for distribution to members and supporters;
  • Other reasonable duties that may be required.

PERSON SPECIFICATION

Essential

  • Must be okay to work flexible hours as we are not your typical 9-5 organisation;
  • Excellent communication skills with superb knowledge of the English language, including taking pride in accurate spelling, punctuation and grammar;
  • Familiarity with the lingua franca of academia, e.g. able to read a research paper in a social science journal, and the ability to translate research findings into plain English;
  • A passion for free speech and a broad understanding of the complexities of free speech issues, including the point of view of those who don’t value free speech as highly as us or don’t believe it is in peril;
  • Experience in writing polemically about complex issues across a range of different publications, from periodicals to tabloids;
  • Keen interest in free speech stories in the mainstream media and social media;
  • Ability to work quickly to deadline and at a moment’s notice without a significant decline in quality of written work;
  • Broad knowledge of social media;
  • A can-do attitude; and
  • Excellent attention to detail in written work, e.g. could be employed as a copy editor.


Desirable

  • Experience of working in the Communications Department of a similar organisation;
  • Front-of-house broadcast media experience; and
  • Some understanding of public policy/legislative affairs.

APPLICATION PROCESS

Please submit your application including your CV and a cover letter of no more than 750 words that answers the following questions:

• Why do you want to work for the FSU?

• When can you start?

• What is your salary expectation?

We’re keen to fill the position quickly so will begin the interview process on a rolling basis.

Applicants should send a CV and introductory letter to jobs@freespeechunion.org.