Health Justice Organizer
The Debt Collective is seeking a full-time Health Justice Organizer to organize medical debtors in Pittsburgh. Part-time arrangements can be made for the right candidates. This is a one year contract position (possibility of renewal contingent on funding).
Most recent attempts to tackle the growing national medical debt crisis have left out an important group of people – medical debtors themselves. We believe that organizing debtors and helping them build their collective power is key to challenging the systems and institutions that have landed them (and others in their communities) in debt through decades of predatory practices. We also believe that organizing medical debtors is a crucial component of the long term fight for free public healthcare for all.
This Organizer will work closely with our national medical debt campaign lead and local partner organizations to develop and pilot a grassroots outreach project to build a base of medical debtors in the city. The ideal candidate has a background in the labor movement, electoral or legislative campaigns, and/or community organizing. Candidates with extensive volunteer organizing experience are also encouraged to apply. Candidates should be motivated to fight for economic and racial justice with creativity and conviction, and should have a keen interest in the politics of debt and healthcare.
Applicants should be team players who work well with others, are eager to learn and broaden their experience, and can take initiative and self-direct.
- Organizing locally to build a base of medical debtors;
- Building relationships with debtors, including identifying and developing potential local leaders;
- Building and strengthening relationships with coalition partners, local institutions, community leaders, and potential allies;
- Organizing and facilitating political education events, debt clinics, canvasses, meetings, and debtors assemblies with partners;
- Planning local direct actions and targeted debt strikes at key strategic moments;
- Developing outreach materials and informational resources on medical debt in the city;
- Representing the Debt Collective at relevant meetings and events;
- Doing local media outreach;
- Prepping debtors for press interviews and other public speaking appearances;
- Working with the Debt Collective’s national medical debt team to coordinate organizing activities and develop campaign messaging;
- Connecting medical debtors who have other household debts to other relevant Debt Collective campaigns;
- Growing the Debt Collective’s union membership and participating in the broad work of the Debt Collective.
Qualifications and Experience
- Committed to the Debt Collective’s vision of debt abolition, economic transformation, and racial justice;
- At least two years of experience working in organized labor, electoral or legislative campaigns, and/or community organizing (candidates with volunteer organizing experience are also encouraged to apply);
- Familiarity with the political landscape in and around Pittsburgh – knowledge of key players, community dynamics, social and economic issues;
- Strong interpersonal skills, understands the importance of building & maintaining good relationships;
- Self-directed, persistent, adaptable, and comfortable taking initiative;
- Exceptional communication skills, strategic and creative thinker;
- Ability to balance multiple priorities under pressure;
- Willingness to assume a flexible work schedule, which will at times involve working nights and weekends;
- Comfortable using and learning digital platforms;
- Reliable access to a car or other dependable means of transportation;
- Interest and willingness to learn about the politics of debt, healthcare, and the care economy;
- Interest and/or experience in research or policy is a plus.
Debt disproportionately impacts people from the most marginalized communities — including Black and brown people, people from working class backgrounds, women, and LGBTQ+ people. People with these identities and members of other marginalized communities are strongly encouraged to apply for this position.