Illinois Nurses Association

Illinois Nurses Association

Legislative Organizer

Based in Chicago, IL


Job Title: Legislative Organizer
FLSA Status: Full Time Exempt
Effective Date: March 1, 2021

Job Description
The Legislative Organizer works under the direction of the Senior Lead Organizer, in conjunction with the Executive Director and Board of Directors. The Legislative Organizer will work with the Executive Director, the organizing team, and the Board of Directors in developing and implementing a legislative program that provides opportunities for broad participation from rank-and-file union members. The purpose of this role is to support the union’s local and state legislative goals and initiatives: this will include working with field staff, members and community organizations and coalitions, and elected officials, and use the tools of organizing, advocacy and communication strategies to move pro-nursing and pro-labor local and state policy, and support the organizing goals of INA through legislative campaigns. The role of the Legislative Organizer is to support INA nurses in becoming a unified voice for all nurses in the State of Illinois, those in unions and those not yet organized.

Job Duties And Responsibilities

  • The Legislative Organizer performs a wide range of duties, which may vary according to the needs of the overall program or a specific campaign. Please note that this position may be used on non-legislative organizing campaigns if needed. While other duties may be assigned as needed, examples of those duties and responsibilities are listed below:
  • Assess the political and legislative knowledge and engagement of INA members throughout the state, identify challenges and opportunities, and work with staff and members on addressing both. In conjunction with other staff, establish and lead campaign plans to mobilize members for legislative/political action.
  • Implement grassroots action plans designed to further INA’s legislative goals.
  • Plan, coordinate, and conduct educational and training activities and materials aimed at increasing grassroots participation in legislative advocacy. Organize members to campaign on initiatives aimed at winning and defending pro-nursing, pro-labor legislation, promoting a positive image of nurses and unions as champions for the people of the Illinois, and building the mobilization capacity of INA.
  • In conjunction with the organizing team and members, make contacts with non-organized nurses throughout the state, forging relationships and strengthening a unified identity.
  • Engage members to push INA’s legislative agenda at their worksites and within their communities.
  • Train members on how to use direct actions aimed at legislators to address workplace problems.
  • Work with field staff to develop and run campaigns to increase member PAC contributions and recruit members for lobby days and electoral work.
  • Assist in developing messaging for political communications. Prepare and/or support the creation of legislative education materials.
  • Engage members, labor allies, elected officials, and community members to support the INA’s legislative issues and campaigns.
  • Provide assistance in broader communications function, including social media, website and other communications tools and strategies where needed.
  • Regularly meet with INA members and prospective members to determine legislative needs. Work with staff and members to integrate political and legislative strategy into planning for contract and organizing campaigns.
  • Create organizations, when appropriate, of key constituents needed for strategic leverage (i.e. hospital patient organization, local resident organization, etc.).

Skills & Abilities

  • Ability to lead, motivate and inspire members to develop into leaders and participate in key union programs (i.e. politics, organizing, coalition building, and legislative advocacy).
  • High-level ability to communicate orally and in writing.
  • Ability to establish, maintain rapport and work in mutually beneficial coalitions with widely varied ethnic, social and philosophical groups.
  • Ability to plan strategically, follow a plan and be accountable to a team in carrying out a plan.
  • Experience in planning and executing legislative and electoral activities, including phone banks, GOTV, precinct organization, vote-by-mail, signature gathering, direct mail, social media, etc.
  • Demonstrated understanding of organizing and how it can be used to empower members and ensure superior outcomes.
  • Familiarity with local political environment and relevant governmental agencies, and how they relate to healthcare employers and Union members' needs.
  • Ability to conduct in-depth research to determine sources of leverage (political, corporate, governmental, etc.) for potential organizing targets or ongoing bargaining campaigns
  • Ability to mobilize Union members to participate in political campaigns across the state
  • Strong personal planning and time management skills, ability to develop and carry out work plans with minimal supervision, and ability to work with people from diverse cultures and backgrounds.


  • A college degree in a relevant discipline and/or commensurate union or social movement experience; graduation from an accredited four-year college or university with course work in Labor Relations, Political Science or Government preferred.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop and implement a plan.
  • Demonstrated ability to formulate and deliver on short-term and long-term member development and capacity building goals.
  • Demonstrated ability to communicate effectively both orally and in writing with elected officials and with community organizations, members, and other staff.
  • Knowledge of union organizing practice and principles.
  • Dynamic interpersonal skills and ability to build strong relationships with diverse constituencies.
  • Willingness to work evenings or weekends, when needed, and at times long hours; ability to work independently while contributing to a strong team spirit.
  • Strong computer skills; experience with union databases systems for inputting and tracking organizing targets preferred.
  • Dynamic and engaging facilitation and training skills, and an ability to balance multiple short-term and long-term projects.
  • Bilingual (Spanish, Tagalog) a plus.

Physical Requirements (as required by ADA)

  • Work is performed in a variety of employment settings. Driving, in-state travel, temporary assignments, irregular and extended work hours are required.
  • A valid driver’s license and car is required.
  • Long and irregular hours frequently required.

Salary is commensurate with experience. Excellent benefits package that includes paid holidays, vacations, retirement benefits, and health insurance (including dental).

Women and people of color are encouraged to apply.

Send email with cover letter and résumé to Executive Director jbartmes@illinoisnurses.com. Reference Legislative Organizer in subject line and say you found this posting on unionjobs.com.

WHEN APPLYING: Be sure to indicate that you saw this information at UNIONJOBS.COM.