Job Description

Posting Title: HUMAN Rights Officer (REGIONAL) (Temporary Job Opening), P4 (Temporary Job Opening) Job Code Title: HUMAN RIGHTS OFFICER Department/Office: Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights Duty Station: PANAMA CITY Posting Period: 18 January 2021 - 31 January 2021 Job Opening Number: 21-Human Rights Affairs-OHCHR-148067-J-Panama City (R) United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity Organisational Setting and Reporting This position is located in the Regional Office for Central America and the Dominican Republic (ROCA) in the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in Panama City. The incumbent will work under the general supervision of ROCA Regional Representative, and the direct supervision of the Deputy Regional Representative ROCA and of the Chief of Sustainable Development Section (SDS), Geneva.

Responsibilities Within delegated authority, the Human Rights Officer, will have a regional responsibility for Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) in the matters of her/his functions below:
  • Assists the work of OHCHR in LAC to support the strengthening of United Nations regional system and UN country teams coherence on human rights normative-operational linkages including in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the integration of human rights in Common County Analysis (CCA) and the UN Sustainable Development Cooperation Frameworks (UNSDCF).
  • Coordinates and provides guidance on policy, programming and Capacity Development support in the area of human rights mainstreaming in the UN development work for the LAC region, including by engaging with the Peer Support Group and other UN actors in the region.
  • Prepares monthly and annual reports on activities and achievements of the objectives set in the work plan.
  • Upon request provides advice, training and technical assistance to further catalyzing coordinated UN responses in order to strengthen national capacity for the promotion and protection of human rights, including follow up to recommendations from the human rights mechanisms.
  • Ensures up-to-date information among main partners in the region regarding substantive matters in the field of human rights mainstreaming in the UN development work and makes recommendations on actions to take.
  • Maintains contact with other sectors of the UN development system in countries of the region, other international organizations and government counterparts on human rights mainstreaming coordination and policy matters, briefs representatives and provides as appropriate suggestions and recommendations.
  • Assists in the development and implementation of a training program in the area of human rights mainstreaming in the UN development work with particular attention to gender perspectives.
Responsible for carrying out, in consultation with the Regional Representative, coordination work and administrative functions related to planning and budget of human rights mainstreaming in development projects and initiatives.

Engages in OHCHR's 2030 Community of Practice on SDGs, ESCR, Prevention and Right to Development, facilitating discussion, sharing of best practices and enabling cross-fertilization between and across headquarters and field presences.

Trains and supervises new/junior staff.

Performs other related duties as required.

Competencies PROFESSIONALISM: Knowledge of and exposure to a range of human rights issues including, human rights mainstreaming in development work in the current context of Latin America and the Caribbean Region; approaches and techniques to identify and address gaps with respect to human rights protection and promotion; ability to assess and address needs for technical assistance and Capacity Building in the area of human rights mainstreaming for regional and national partners; Supports the integration of human rights in Common Country Analysis and Sustainable Development Cooperation Frameworks following the reform of the UN development system. Knowledge of and exposure to institutional mandates and the work of UN human rights mechanisms; Knowledge of the Latin America and Caribbean region. Familiarity with the SG's reform of the UN development system and new processes. Ability to evaluate and integrate information from a variety of sources and assess impact on the human rights situation in the country, including the political environment and legal statutes as they pertain to human rights. Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations. Provides leadership and takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.

COMMUNICATION: Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; asks questions to clarify, and exhibits interest in having two-way communication; tailors language, tone, style and format to match audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.

TEAMWORK: Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals; solicits input by genuinely valuing others' ideas and expertise; is willing to learn from others; places team agenda before personal agenda; supports and acts in accordance with final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position; shares credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings.

PLANNING AND ORGANIZING: Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning; monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; uses time efficiently.

Education Advanced university degree (Master's degree or equivalent degree) in law, human rights, political science or international relations, social sciences or other related disciplines. A first level university degree in combination with two additional years of qualifying work experience maybe accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience A minimum of seven years of progressively responsible experience in human rights, international relations, law or related area is required.

Experience working with the United Nations on the integration of human rights in policies and programmes in development at regional and national levels, following the reform of the UN development system, is desirable.

At least 2 years of recent experience working on or in the LAC region mainstreaming human rights in development is desirable.

Languages English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this post advertised, fluency in English is required. Fluency in Spanish is desirable. Knowledge of French is also desirable.

Assessment Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.


  • If the selected candidate is a staff member from the United Nations Secretariat, the selection will be administered as a temporary assignment.
  • While this temporary assignment may provide the successful applicant with an opportunity to gain new work experience, the selection for this position is for a limited period and has no bearing on the future incumbency of the post.
  • Subject to the funding source of the position, the eligibility for this temporary job opening may be limited to candidates based at the duty station.
  • This temporary job opening may be limited to "internal candidates," who have been recruited through a competitive examination administered according to staff rule 4.16 or staff selection process including the review of a central review body established according to staff rule 4.15.
  • Staff members of the United Nations common system organizations who will reach the mandatory age of separation or retirement within the duration of the current temporary need period are not eligible to apply. Submitting an application or selection for the current temporary job opening does not delay or increase the mandatory age of separation.
  • Retirees above the mandatory age of separation who wish to be considered for the current temporary job opening must indicate the reason for their last separation as "retirement." Such retirees shall not be employed by the Organization, unless (a) the operational requirements of the Organization cannot be met by staff members who are qualified and available to perform the required functions; and (b) the proposed employment would not adversely affect the Career Development or redeployment opportunities of other staff members and represents both a cost-effective and operationally sound solution to meet the needs of the service.
United Nations Considerations According to article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter of the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the employment of the staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. Candidates will not be considered for employment with the United Nations if they have committed violations of International Human Rights law, violations of international humanitarian law, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, or sexual harassment, or if there are reasonable grounds to believe that they have been involved in the commission of any of these acts. The term "sexual exploitation" means any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including, but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. The term "sexual abuse" means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force or under unequal or coercive conditions. The term "sexual harassment" means any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that might reasonably be expected or be perceived to cause offence or humiliation, when such conduct interferes with work, is made a condition of employment or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, and when the gravity of the conduct warrants the termination of the perpetrator's working relationship. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment.

Due regard will be paid to the importance of recruiting the staff on as wide a geographical basis as possible. The United Nations places no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs. The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.

The paramount consideration in the appointment, transfer, or promotion of staff shall be the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. By accepting an offer of appointment, United Nations staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and assignment by him or her to any activities or offices of the United Nations in accordance with staff regulation 1.2 (c). In this context, all internationally recruited staff members shall be required to move periodically to discharge new functions within or across duty stations under conditions established by the Secretary-General.

Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the Manual for the Applicant, which can be accessed by clicking on "Manuals" hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.

The evaluation of applicants will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted in the application according to the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations including the Charter of the United Nations, resolutions of the General Assembly, the Staff Regulations and Rules, administrative issuances and guidelines. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their personal profile and qualifications according to the instructions provided in inspira to be considered for the current job opening. No amendment, addition, deletion, revision or modification shall be made to applications that have been submitted. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to reference checks to verify the information provided in the application.

Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at 11:59 p.m. (New York time) on the deadline date.


Apply Now