The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) is the world's largest humanitarian organization, with 192 member National Societies. As part of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, our work is guided by seven fundamental principles; humanity, impartiality, neutrality, independence, voluntary service, unity and universality.
Organizational ContextThe International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC or “the Federation”) is the world’s largest volunteer-based humanitarian network. The Federation is a membership organization established by and comprised of its member National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies. Along with National Societies and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the Federation is part of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. The overall aim of the IFRC is “to inspire, encourage, facilitate, and promote at all times all forms of humanitarian activities by National Societies with a view to preventing and alleviating human suffering and thereby contributing to the maintenance and promotion of human dignity and peace in the world.” It works to meet the needs and improve the lives of vulnerable people before, during and after disasters, health emergencies and other crises. The Federation is served by a Secretariat based in Geneva, with regional and country offices throughout the world. The Secretariat is led by the IFRC Secretary General and provides the central capacity of the Federation to serve, connect, and represent National Societies. The Secretariat’s focus includes providing support to the IFRC governance mechanisms; setting norms and standards; providing guidance; ensuring consistency, Coordination, and accountability for performance; knowledge sharing; promoting collaboration within and respect for the RCRC Movement; and expanding engagement with partners. The Secretariat’s headquarters is organized in three main business groups: (i) Partnerships, including Movement and Membership; (ii) Programs and Operations; and (iii) Management. The Secretariat has five regional offices as follows: Americas (Panama City); Africa (Nairobi); Asia and Pacific- AP (Kuala Lumpur); Europe (Budapest); Middle East and North Africa-MENA (Beirut). The position is part of the Legal Department, which sits with the Office of the Secretary General. The Legal Department supports the organisation globally in the following areas: • Management of legal risks; • Compliance with applicable legal and regulatory framework; and • Support to member National Societies in their own legal risk management. The position requires travel from time to time.
Reporting directly to the Managing Legal Counsel for Partnerships, Programmes and Operations, the Senior Legal Counsel for Partnerships, Programmes and Operations – Covid Operation, is a lead professional who will provide expert and authoritative legal advice to management and staff at all levels of the organization and globally, to mitigate the risks and liability of the organisation in a broad range of areas and in particular in relation to Partnerships, Programmes and Operations for the Covid Operation. The incumbent will:
• lead and support the organization’s activities globally, in relation to the management of legal risks in the aforementioned areas of expertise, and develop standard and tools for the Legal-related matters;
• support the development and use of the Contract Management system in use globally; and
• proactively contribute to the development of the organization’s broader policy and legal services to its membership.
This position requires travel from time to time.
Job Duties and Responsibilities
The Senior Legal Counsel for Partnerships, Programmes and Operations - Covid Operation, is responsible for providing expert advice for:
General advice and management of compliance obligations and legal risks in relation to the Covid Operation:
- Provide expert and authoritative legal advice, at all levels of the organization and globally, regarding the management of the legal risk for the organisation in a broad range of general legal issues and complex and sensitive legal matters;
- Provide expert and authoritative legal advice and guidance in the following areas, including in relation to the development and implementation of the Federation’s wide systems, procedures, policies and tools, which have an impact on the legal obligations and risks of the organization:
(1) Partnerships, innovations and resource mobilisation
• Set the legal strategy, under the guidance of the Managing Legal Counsel, in terms of partnerships, resource mobilisation and innovations with the humanitarian and private sector;
• Provide legal advice and oversee the negotiation of a broad range of complex and sensitive partnerships, resource mobilisation and innovative financing and other initiatives with respect to the legal structuring, any contractual issues, and the use of IFRC and Movement name and logo; and
• Make representations to partners for the negotiation and implementation of partnerships and innovative initiatives;
• Provide legal advice and support to policy development and drafting and Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) in relation to partnership, innovations and resource mobilisation.
(2) Programmes and Operations
• Set the legal strategy, under the guidance of the Managing Legal Counsel, in terms of Programmes and Operations;
• Provide legal advice and oversee the negotiation of a broad range of agreements and projects in relation to Programmes and Operations; and
• Provide legal advice and support to policy development and drafting in particular operational Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs).
(3) Logistics, Procurement and Supply Chain Management
• Provide legal advice to the Logistics, Procurement and Supply chain management (LPSCM) and the Global Feel base in Dubai on any matters globally, including the provision of services to National Societies and other humanitarian actors, for ensuring compliance with the Procurement policies, rules and regulations;
• Provide legal advice and support to policy development and drafting as well as model agreements and global tools; and
• Provide legal advice on the applicability of international sanctions regime and anti-terrorism measures to IFRCs supply chain management globally.
(4) Emergency Deployment Mechanisms
• Provide legal advice on the legal structuring and direction of deployment mechanisms of the IFRC to the Human Resources Department and Surge colleagues; and
• Provide legal advice and support to policy and procedure development and drafting, as well as model agreements and global tools in relation to IFRC global deployments.
(5) Security matters
• Provide legal advice to the to the Security Unit in relation to the duty of care owed to staff and related liabilities;
• Provide legal advice and support to policy development and drafting as well as model agreements and global tools, including with National Societies in light of applicable IFRC and Movement coordination rules; and
(6) Case management: Handling of disputes (mediation, arbitration, litigation etc.) in which the Federation is a party
• Set the legal strategy, under the guidance of the Managing Legal Counsel, and oversee all legal disputes in which the Federation is a party worldwide in relation to the aforementioned areas of expertise, including before national courts: Oversee all settlements;
• Oversee referral of cases to national authorities and request for information and/or cooperation from national authorities;
• Provide legal advice on the waiver of privileges and immunities of the Federation and its staff; Draft decision papers for submission to the Secretary General for the waiver of privileges and immunities with regards to legal action to be taken and settlements;
• Provide legal advice on the disclosure of documents and sharing of information and any communication lines;
• Conduct legal research in connection with such cases; and • Lead, select and coordinate the engagement and utilization of external legal counsel in relevant countries; and
• Liaise with local counsels worldwide to set the legal strategy and ensure coherent strategy and alignment across the board.
- Provide authoritative legal advice on the compliance obligations of the organization – internal and external - and applicable legal and regulatory framework worldwide for the aforementioned areas of expertise; - Provide practical guidance to support the organisation’s business globally, in order to ensure business practices are conducted in accordance with its policies and other relevant requirements; - Assist the Managing Legal Counsel in formulating responses to specific and general queries from organization stakeholders in the aforementioned areas of expertise; and - Advise the Federation’s regional legal advisers on specific issues (esp. Programmes and Operations, security, Logistics and Movement coordination).
Training - Develop training material and provide trainings to IFRC staff and national societies legal advisers on any issue of legal expertise (esp. legal status, contracting, legal risks management and compliance, with specific attention to diplomatic and international law, Programmes and Operations, Logistics, Security and Movement coordination and deployment issues).
Support to Membership - Develop webinars on relevant legal matters for National Societies in the aforementioned areas of expertise; - Provide legal advice to National Societies in the in the aforementioned areas of expertise, and develop common templates and guidance for agreements within the Movement in relation these matters; and - Strengthen the active and vibrant network of legal advisers from National Societies, the ICRC and other humanitarian organizations and other relevant professional networks, particularly with regard to the annual legal advisers’ meeting which the Legal Department holds each year for National Society legal advisers.
Other tasks - Monitor legal information and developments that are or may be applicable to the Federation and National Societies; and - Perform any other job-related tasks as assigned by the Managing Legal Counsel.
University degree in law
Bar Membership or equivalent
Specialized studies in public international law, international organization law, and/or management would be an asset
At least 10 years of prior experience in the practice of law
Experience in private practice and/or in-house corporate legal environment
Field experience handling legal issues
Experience with contract Management Systems (CMS)
Experience in dealing with outside counsel
Experience in working in a team environment, with remote team members
Sensitivity in and prior exposure to cross-cultural situations
Knowledge of the ILOAT case-law
Experience in managing people remotely
Red Cross/Red Crescent experience or other humanitarian/non for-profit experience would be an asset
Knowledge, skills and languages
Fluently spoken and written English
Good command of another IFRC official language (French, Spanish or Arabic)
Competencies and values
Core Competencies: Communication, Collaboration and Teamwork; Judgement and Decision Making, National Society and Customer Relations, Creativity and Innovation, Building Trust
Functional Competencies: Strategic Orientation, Building Alliances, Empowering Others